Sunday, February 14, 2010

Bishop who could have started World War III deposed


In a move that is unprecedented in recent history, the leadership of the Serbian Orthodox Church in Kosovo, has relieved Bishop Artemije of his duties. The action was taken against the will of the controversial bishop who has been in office for years.

The controversial Kosovo Bishop Artemije Radosavljevic has been relieved from his post against his will.

The leadership of the Church (Holy Synod) had displaced the dogmatic and nationalist Bishop from the Episcopal throne due financial irregularities, said Bishop Irinej on Saturday in Belgrade. The 75-year-old was also guilty of he defying the orders of the church leadership. The retired Bishop Atanasije has been temporarily mandated with the leadership of the Kosovo Diocese.

The deposed Artemije diverted church funds and donations from the faithful to private accounts, and lived in luxury, as the media has previously reported. In addition, he had robbed, to the horror of art experts, their historic character from medieval churches and monasteries with renovations and paint. Several hundred priests, monks and lay people gathered despite a severe winter storm in front of the Patriarchate in Belgrade to support the controversial bishop.

Artemije, who extremely conservative in a theological sense, is one of the most famous bishops of Serbia. He had criticized the leaders of the country openly that they had not retaken by force of arms the occupied and former Serbian province of Kosovo which is now independent. He had taken issue with the U.S. and the EU, and wished to prosecute NATO, and had advocated the deployment of weapons and volunteers from Russia in Kosovo.

Some context
The Churches destroyed during the intervention of NATO in Kosovo.

More information here from a website established with the blessing of the Bishop