Macedonian Orthodox Church in UK


“During the night Paul had a vision of a man of Macedonia standing and begging him, ‘Come over to Macedonia and help us’”

 

Macedonian Orthodox Church in London

St Barnabas Chapel, Mannette Street, W1, London

 

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Литургија Св Фануриј

September 10, 2017, 10:30am

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Најблиска метро станица e Tottenham Court Road.

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ЦУО при Ц.О. Св Архангел Мигаил и сите свети ангели
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Литургија-Голема Богородица -Littlehampron

August 28, 2017, 10:30am

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The Archbishopric of Ohrid

and The Macedonian Orthodox Church
Clement became the first Macedonian bishop

There is no data available whether representatives from Macedonia attended the First Ecumenical Synod of Nicea in 325. However, the Second Synod at Serdica in 343 was attended by Parigorius, the first Metropolitan of Skopje, and his suffragan the Bishop of Ulpiana (present-day Liplyan); both supported Orthodoxy. The presence of Parigorius proves that there were organized bishoprics in Macedonia headed by metropolitans and bishops since the first decades of the 4th century. In the 5th century the church in Macedonia was well-organized. Of the two metropolitan’s dioceses in Thessaloniki and Skopje, the diocese in Thessaloniki was more influential due to its foundation by the Apostle Paul.

….And a vision appeared to Paul in the night; There stood a man of Macedonia, and prayed him, saying, “Come over into Macedonia, and help us”.
St. Jovan Church in Ohrid
The settlement of Slavs in the Balkans, their Christianization and the development of Slavic liturgy and literacy gave a completely new quality to the development of the church in Macedonia. Prince Boris, after the establishment of the Bulgarian state incorporating a part of Macedonia, ordained Clement as Bishop of Dremvica and Velika (893) with a residence in Ohrid, wherein Clement became the first Macedonian-Slavic bishop. The religious service in his bishopric was, of course, held in the language of the Macedonian Slavs, and Ohrid became an educational, literary and a church center.

With the establishment of Samuil’s state, the necessity for an independent Macedonian church became imperative. Until the time of Samuil, the church in Macedonia had been under the jurisdiction of the Bulgarian Patriarchate founded by Tsar Symeon without the approval of the Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople. At that time eparchies are recorded as existing in the Macedonian towns of Voden, Meglen, Serres, Ohrid and Skopje. The success of the komitopulis’ uprising and the wresting of Macedonia away from Byzantine rule (the Bulgarian Empire had fallen in the meantime) demanded that ecclesiastical authority be independent of Byzantine authority and lie close to the secular authority of Samuil, both geographically and ideologically. The center of the church moved to Prespa on the island of Achilles, where Samuil built a magnificent church to house it. The relics of St. Achilles were brought from Larissa, which Samuil conquered in 985.
There is no concrete data as to when Samuil created an autonomous Macedonian archbishopric. Logically, it is most likely that he would begin such immediately after proclaiming himself tsar, which suggests the late 10th century.When he transferred his capital from Prespa to Ohrid, he likewise moved the residence of the archbishopric, known hereafter as the Archbishopric of Ohrid.As Samuil’s empire expanded, the jurisdiction of his church was extended as well. The first archbishop of the Archbishopric of Ohrid was Philip, who retained this position from its foundation until the murder of Gavril Radomir in 1015. When Ivan Vladislav took the throne, Philip was dismissed from his post.
The Macedonian people has re-established its church as one of the fundamental features of its national identity on the foundations of the Archbishopric of Ohrid. This autocephalous church has existed, first at Prespa and then in Ohrid, since the time of Czar Samuil and his descendants as the spiritual institution of that empire. It was legally strengthened by the Byzantine Emperor Basil II as an ecumenical Christian institution immediately after his defeat of Samuil’s state in 1018.In the 13th century at the time of the Bulgarian Emperor Ivan Asen II, in addition to the church at Trnovo, the older Ohrid Church was also an object of respect. This was also the case under the rule of the Serbian sovereign, Stefan Dushan: in addition to his church at Pec, he treated the Archbishopric of Ohrid with equal respect. After the proclamation of the Serbian Patriarchate in 1346 and its expulsion from the ecumenical body, the Patriarchate in Constantinople, the archbishops of Ohrid were engaged in a process of reconciliation for the return of Serbia into the orthodox community.

St. Naum Church in Ohrid
With the fall of Ohrid under Ottoman rule at the close of the 14th century the Archbishopric of Ohrid was legalized before the Turkish authorities and strengthened its rights, as had the Patriarchate of Constantinople after 1453, and for a period in the 15th century both the territory of Serbia and a part of Bulgaria came under its ecclesiastical jurisdiction.

In the Ottoman state the archbishops of Ohrid, particularly in the 17th and 18th centuries, took on the role of popular leaders in the movement for liberation, carrying on talks, predominantly with Austria, concerning the formation of a state for the captive Christians, primarily the Macedonians.Throughout the long life of this extremely distinguished institution, lasting nearly eight centuries, the Archbishopric of Ohrid had not lost its autocephalous status, regardless of changes in the political situation under Byzantine, Bulgarian and Serbian rule or during the lengthy period of Ottoman Turkish rule. Other peoples and their parts of the Balkans had come under the diocese of the Archbishopric of Ohrid, which was extremely large, up to the 13th century and under Ottoman rule (15th and 16th centuries), but throughout the whole of its existence the Macedonians formed the basic zone of its eparchies and the main body of the faithful. The guardian and patron saint of the Church was the first pupil of Ss. Cyril and Methodius, St. Clement of Ohrid, one of the founders of Slavonic culture and literacy. His work was celebrated by distinguished Greek archbishops (e.g. Theophilact and Homatian), who respected the traditions of their flock, during the Byzantine period. The language of this institution of public worship was Slavonic, established by Ss. Cyril, Methodius and Clement and also ancient Greek which, together with Latin, was treated as a language of the entire Christian world.In the cultural traditions of the Ohrid School, especially in its art, portraits of the first Slavonic educators from the 9th and 10th centuries have been created over a period of a thousand years, and many hundreds of representations of them have been preserved in churches. Macedonia was a center of the iconography of the old Slavonic period right up to the end of the 19th century.

In the 20th century, during the period of the Second World War and the course of the military actions of the struggle for Macedonian statehood, the Macedonians put the question of an autocephalous church. In 1943, when the national liberation movement became a massive uprising and when the first liberated territory was established in the village of Izdeglavje in the Debar district of the Ohrid region, the First Assembly of Macedonian Clergy was held on 21st October and a decision was taken to form an Archpriests’ Governership with the aim of its developing into an autocephalous Macedonian church.

The Macedonian Orthodox Church is administered by an assembly and consists of the Eparchies of Skopje, Prespa and Bitola, Debar and Kicevo, Bregalnica, Polog and Kumanovo, Vardar, Strumica, the American and Canadian Eparchy, European Eparchy and the Australian Eparchy.