Bishop Artemije: Kosovo-Metohija's churches and monasteries
suffer two months' power disconnection
In the beginning of November, the bishop of Ras-Prizren and Kosovo-Metohija, Artemije stated that he had addressed an appeal to the authorities in Belgrade and to the Ministry for Kosovo and Metohija for three times up to now to find a solution for the problem of more than twenty churches and monasteries in Kosovo that had been suffering power disconnection for two months. However, he has not received an answer yet.
The bishop gave an interview to Beta news agency saying he has still been waiting for the answer since the churches and monasteries could not solve the problem all by themselves by signing a contract with Kosovo Energy Corporation (KEC) because that would mean their acknowledgment of the independent state of Kosovo and Kosovo institutions.
«Periodical statements regarding this matter that are issued in media, we cannot accept as an answer to our appeals,» the bishop said.
«A statement of a daily newspaper has said we must solve the problem all by ourselves. The same statement was lodged with our people when certain villages were disconnected from power supply. The people, left without any help of Belgrade authorities, were compelled to sign a contract with KEC. We are still not ready for such a solution,» the bishop set out.
His Grace also pointed out to the poor condition of Serbian sacred sites. For instance, the church in Samodreza in which the Serbian army received the Holy Communion on the eve of the Battle of Kosovo (1389) but which is today being used as a public toilet.
«Our oldest and most significant church, celebrated in folk songs fom the past, in which saint King Lazar with his army received the Holy Communion on the eve of the Battle of Kosovo (1389), is in a terrible condition beyond any words,» the bishop Artemije said and added «the church is now turned into a disposal of garbage and waste of all kinds.»
He noted that not only was the church in Samodreza desecrated but also many others he was not able to visit.
Electricity disconnection to Serbian sacred sites started on September 2. Today over twenty locations belonging to the Serbian Orthodox Church (SOC) are without any supply of electricity. Some of the mentioned locations are the monasteries of Gracanica, Holy Archangels near Prizren, St Kosmas and Damian in Zociste, Gorioc near Istok, and Devic near Srbica.
30 November 2009