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Serb bishop slams West’s religious meddling, efforts to ‘tear apart Orthodox Christianity’

The West is trying to splinter the Orthodox Church, Serb bishop warns

BELGRADE, October 11. /TASS/. The West is trying to splinter the Orthodox Church, which is the last mechanism for uniting peoples of the ex-USSR and the former Yugoslavia, Metropolitan Amphilochius of Montenegro and the Littoral, one of the most influential bishops of the Serbian Orthodox Church, told TASS.

"The Americans support attempts to create new churches, because Western leaders seek to tear apart the Orthodox Church. After the disintegration of the two states - the Soviet Union and Yugoslavia - church has been the only mechanism of our unity. They believe that the Orthodox Church should be torn apart and that it is essential to support these separatist groups, which have neither faith nor any church upbringing. They are trying to enslave the church on behalf of some state or nation," he said.

According to the metropolitan, such trends have been observed in the former Soviet Union, particularly in Ukraine, and on the territory of the Serbian Orthodox Church, specifically, in Montenegro, where projects as a new "Montenegrin Church" are being concocted with the support of local authorities.

"If the church serves some political needs, it is no longer Christ’s church. It is a secular organization akin to a party with some religious elements," His Eminence Amphilochius said.

When asked by a TASS correspondent about the Serbian Church’s attitude to attempts by Ukraine and Montenegro to create non-canonical Orthodox Churches for the sake of short-term political goals, Primate of the Serbian Orthodox Church Patriarch Irineij earlier castigated such a move as "a disgrace to history and the people.".