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Old 04-29-2012, 01:51 PM   #3
George S.
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TETOVO - In the past six months over 20 churches and monasteries in the Tetovo area, situated in the areas of military activities, are destroyed, burnt down or damaged. Albanian terrorists have reached for the sacral objects, for those that represent symbols of the Christianity and orthodoxy, for values that mark the history and the tradition. A part of them were placed under the protection of the state. The last of those objects was the religious temple "Sv. Atanasie" in Leshok village. The artefacts of this cathedral date back to 14th century A.D., and given the numerous features and meanings, they represents the pride of the whole Polog Christianity, of the Macedonian Orthodox Church (MPC), as well as of the culture, art and literature in Macedonia.
Mr. Mirko Vidoevski, art historian and zograph (icon painter) points out that apart from the church in Leshok, another church consecrated to St. Atanasie, which was erected on the hill over the village and as a monument dates back from the 13th century, was also destroyed. He says that together with the painters, Aleksandar Nastovski and Pavle Kuzmanovski, and the icon painter, Krste Gogovski (who is among those who are kidnapped for over a month now), in a longer period of time they have managed to restore and artistically shape some older and some newly
built orthodox edifices which in these days were targets for the Albanian intruders.
Apart from the two churches in Leshok, it is known with certainty that in Slatino the church "Sveti Nikola" is pulled down, the monastery church "Sveti Atanasie" on the Kale fortress is destroyed. The monastery church "Sveti Gjorgija" in Mala Rechica had also had the same destiny. The orthodox temples "Sveti Nikola" in the Koltuk settlement, and "Sveta Bogorodica" in Gorno Maalo in Tetovo are damaged. This is
the case also with the new church in Tearce "Sveti Dimitrija", the monastery church in Neproshteno "Sveti Gjorgija", then "Sveta Bogorodica" in Dzepchishta, the overnight dormitory of the church "Sveti Gjorgija" in the village Lavce, monastery "Sveti Ilija" in Lukovica, as well as "Sveti Nikola" in the village Odri.
For over a month the owners have no knowledge of the condtion of their houses and other objects in the villages from which the Albanian terrorist gangs have forced the Macedonians away. However, it is with certainty known that some damages are inflicted on "Sveta Petka" in Varvara, "Sveta Bogorodica" and "Sveti Ilija" in Brezno, "Sveti Kuzman i Damjan" in Jedoarce, "Sveti Gjorgija" in Otunje, "Sveti Spas" and "Sveti Jovan Bogoslov" in Jeloshnik and "Sveti Nikola" in Setole. Mr. Mirko Vidoevski says that the greatest number of the sacred places had very old frescoes and icons, the value of which cannot be expressed in financial terms.

One of the most important shrine of Orthodox Macedonians and Serbs

History of the Monastery

The monastery of Matejce is one of those monasteries in Macedonia that were built high up in the mountains at 1005 meters above sea level, on the southeastern side of the mountain Skopska Crna Gora, the Kumanovo side.
The monastery consists of a church dedicated to the Dormition of the Mother of God and the residential part, which is now renovated and adapted for tourists.
We learn about the history of the church from the Serbian king Milutin’s written testimonials from 1300, which note that his son, Czar Dusan began its construction on the foundation of an old church dedicated to St. Mary Mother of God of Monte Negro. The fact that this czar started building the church is also mentioned in the biography of Czar Uros, the last Serbian ruler of Nemanjic dynasty. It states that after Czar Dusan’s death, his wife Elena and his son Uros had the church finished and painted inside.
According to some written sources, until the Second World War there used to be a chapel inside the altar of the church that came from the 12th century. The church was restored in 1934, 1953 and 1960, after a long period of negligence.
From an architectural point of view, the structure has five cupolas on the basis of a cross.
The central cupola has twelve sides and the other four smaller cupolas stand on the angles of the basis. The outside of the altar apse has five sides and is decorated with bricklayers. Pilasters and blind arcade can be seen on the facade.
The hagiographic icons from the 14th century, which fill the interior of the church, are rather damaged. Some depictions of the life of Christ and Mother of God have been saved. On the west wall there are remains that show the vineyards of Byzantine emperors whereas the south wall presents Czar Dusan, Czarina Elena and their son Uros.
What makes this church interesting are the numerous inscriptions. One of them is the one that mentions the year 1568, when archbishop Nikifor of Skopje died. There is also the inscription of Kiril Pejcinovic, the great Macedonian religious and enlightenment missionary from the 19th century.


Serbian Orthodox Church officialy has jurisdiction over the Orthodox community in Macedonia. Self proclaimed independent Macedonian Orthodox Church appeared when the Macedonian dioceses split from its jurisdictional unity with the Serbian Orthodox Church in 1964. The MPC since then remains officialy unrecognized in the family of Orthodox Christian Churches. Serbian Orthodox Church is therefore directly concerned about the destruction of its religious and spiritual heritage on the territory of Macedonia. Great number of medieval Orthodox churches in Macedonia, especially in Tetovo, Kumanovo and Skopje area were built by Serbian medieval kings and nobility, the fact which modern Macedonian historians systematically avoid.

(Nova Makedonija, 1.11.2001.) - Albanian terrorist gangs set fire in the premises of church “St. Spas” in Matejce, which are fully burned down. None of the Albanians in the village tried to extinguish the fire, a fact that shows the fire was set by terrorist arsonists. Police sources say that the Internal Ministry is already on the trace of the ones who set the fire, against whom criminal charges will be brought. During the visit of Opae village, Chairman of Coordination Body for Crisis Management Ilija Filipovski was acquainted with the problems that displaced persons face with in the course of their return to the homes. He was also acquainted with the requests for an organized convoy for Macedonians and Serbs to visit Matejce village.

After the visit of Opae village, representatives of the Coordination Body had talks in Kumanovo community about the problems in high school education in Albanian.

Last edited by George S.; 04-29-2012 at 01:55 PM. Reason: ed
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