The Ecumenical Patriarchate recognized the church of Northern Macedonia as the “church of Ohrid” and included it in the normality of the Orthodox world, without, however, the decision meaning a concession of self-determination.
The Holy Synod of the Ecumenical Patriarchate, as mentioned in its announcement yesterday, “welcomes in hierarchical communion the hierarchy, the clergy and the people under Archbishop Stephen” (the head of the Orthodox Church of the North) wound of the schism “.
The country’s Orthodox Church seceded from the Serbian Patriarchate in 1967 and declared itself a “Macedonian Orthodox Church”, but was not recognized by any other official orthodox church in the world.
In November 2009, the so-called “Macedonian Orthodox Church” added to its name the suffix “Archdiocese of Ohrid”, a self-proclaimed successor of the old Archdiocese of Ohrid.
In April 2018, he sent a letter to the Holy Synod of the Ecumenical Patriarchate, requesting to belong to the Ecumenical Patriarchate under the title “Archdiocese of Ohrid”, abandoning the name “Macedonian Orthodox Church”.
The announcement of the Ecumenical Patriarchate clarifies that it is up to the Church of Serbia to regulate the administrative issues between it and the Church in Northern Macedonia, while emphasizing that it excludes the term “Macedonian” and any other derivative of the word ‘Macedonia’ “.
The decision of the Ecumenical Patriarchate to accept the Skopje church as normal became the first topic in the country’s media. The Government of Northern Macedonia expressed satisfaction.
The Prime Minister of Northern Macedonia Dimitar Kovacevski, in a post on social networking sites, wrote about the restoration of the communion of the Orthodox Church of Northern Macedonia with the Ecumenical Patriarchate and the other orthodox churches. Patriarch Bartholomew, who did a great deed and showed great care for a great Orthodox people. The Ecumenical Patriarchate proved by this act that it supports its historical mission and responsibility.
“Although this action has not resolved the final status and the name, the most important and big step has been completed. Our orthodox church is now in communion with all orthodox churches and today is a historic day after seven decades of complete isolation.
With the decision of the Ecumenical Patriarchate, today we enter the Orthodox family of all the local churches. “This decision of the Ecumenical Patriarchate, which recognizes us as the Archdiocese of Ohrid, means the recognition of the continuity of our historic church by the ancient Archdiocese of Ohrid.”
The decision of the Ecumenical Patriarchate was also welcomed by the leader of the official opposition, VMRO-DPMNE. Christian Mitskoski, through social networking sites, considered the recognition of the regularity of the country’s church to be one of the most brilliant decisions for the Orthodox Church.