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Jovan VI (Vraniškovski) of Ohrid

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testimonies
On [[February 7]], 1998, he took [[monasticism|monastic]] vows, was tonsured a [[monk]] with the name Jovan (John), and was [[ordination|ordained]] a [[deacon]]. The following day, [[February 8]], he was ordained to the [[priest]]hood, becoming a [[hieromonk]]. On [[July 19]], 1998, Fr. John was [[consecration of a bishop|consecrated]] a [[bishop]] with the title of Bishop of Dremvica and assigned as [[auxiliary bishop|vicar]] to the Bishop of Prespa and Pelagonia. In this position, and in addition to taking part in theological consultations, Bp. John led the effort for reconstruction of the Cathedral Church of St. Great Martyr Demetrius in Bitola. In March 2000, he was assigned as administrator of the Metropolitanate of Bregalnica. In November 2000, Bp. John was elected Bishop of Veles and Vardar Valley and enthroned on [[December 4]], 2000.
 
==Overcoming the Schism==
Leading the Holy Metropolitanate of Veles and Vardar Valley, on [[June 22]], 2002, Metr. John responded to the summons for liturgical and canonical unity with the Patriarchate of Peć by the [[Patriarch]] of [[Church of Serbia|Serbia]], [[Pavel (Stojcevic) of Serbia|Pavle]]. Together with all his clergy and faithful of his Metropolitanate, Metr. John was the only bishop of the schismatic Macedonian Orthodox Church who responded positively.
A few days later, he was expelled from the seat of the Metropolitanate together with the monastic community living with him. This was done illegally and without a court warrant by the Police of the Republic of Macedonia. On [[September 23]], 2002, Metr. John was appointed [[Exarch]] of all the territories of the Ohrid [[Archdiocese]] by the Assembly of the Serbian Orthodox Church. On [[December 25]], 2003, he was elected Chairman of the [[Holy Synod]] of Bishops of the Orthodox Ohrid Archdiocese, after it had been constituted.
He On [[September 23]], 2002, Metr. John was detained under custody many times appointed [[Exarch]] of all the territories of the Ohrid [[Archdiocese]] by the authorities Assembly of the Republic of MacedoniaSerbian Orthodox Church. He On [[December 25]], 2003, he was sentenced to a suspended punishment one year elected Chairman of imprisonment for the criminal offense of "performing unauthorized activities" because he had entered a [[churchHoly Synod]] to baptize a female infant in 2004. The Court of Appeal in Bitola sentenced him to eighteen months Bishops of imprisonment in 2005 as judgment for a criminal offense of "incitement of ethnic and religious hatredthe Orthodox Ohrid Archdiocese, discord and intoleranceafter it had been constituted."
On [[May 24]], 2005, on the Feast of Ss. [[Cyril and Methodius]], he was confirmed by his Holiness, the Archbishop of Peć, Metropolitan of Belgrade and Karlovci, and Patriarch of Serbia, Pavle, to be Archbishop of Ohrid and Metropolitan of Skopje in accordance with the Niš Agreement. On the same day, there was an announcement of the Patriarchal and the Assembly's Tomos for Autonomy of the Ohrid Archdiocese, with Metr. John as the Chairman of the Holy Synod of Bishops.
==SourceTestimonies for the faith== Since joining the canonical orthodox church, the persecution began, initially with the illegal expelling from his residence. He is persecued by the state, FYRO Macedonia, was imprisoned several times, and Amnesty International declared him 'a prisoner of conscience'[http://amnesty.org/en/library/asset/EUR05/001/2006/en/28018728-d44a-11dd-8743-d305bea2b2c7/eur050012006en.html]. ===Detentions===He was detained under custody many times by the authorities of the Republic of Macedonia.  He was sentenced to a suspended punishment one year of imprisonment for the criminal offense of "performing unauthorized activities" because he had entered a [[church]] to baptize a female infant in 2004.  ===First Imprisonment=== The Court of Appeal in Bitola sentenced him to eighteen months of imprisonment in 2005 as judgment for a criminal offense of "incitement of ethnic and religious hatred, discord and intolerance." The verdict stated the conviction relied on these three points: # he agreed to be appointed as an Exarch of the Ohrid Archbishopric in Macedoina# he participated in the ordination of the bishops Joachim and Marko and # he officiated at a religious service in an apartment owned by his parents.  He was imprisoned on July 26, 2005 and served 220 days in prison before the Constitutional court declared the last two of these three points to be unconstitutional and his sentence was shortened to 8 months. ===Second Imprisonment=== He was sentenced for the second time, on charges raised by the [[schism]]atic [[Macedonian Orthodox Church]] for "Embezzlement" of a donation of 57.000 Euro - money he never touched nor used and which was timely handed over to the court of first instance in Veles, in the first moment when this was requested by the donor, who later testified before the court that Archbishop Jovan is innocent. Based on the donor's testimony the Archbishop was twice liberated, and the third time, after a severe political pressure, he was sentenced to imprisonment.  As a second defendant he was sentenced to a higher prison term (2 years) than the first defendand (who was sentenced 1 year and 3 months) in 2006.  He was imprisoned on August 8, 2006 and served 256 days before being released.  ===Third trial=== A third trial for "Embezzlement" is in process, also upon charges of the [[schism]]atic [[Macedonian Orthodox Church]]. He was already found not guilty on the charges twice, but the Court of Appeal has rejected these verdicts. ==Sources==*[http://www.poa-info.org/frameset.php?l=en&r=archbishop Biography of the Archbishop of Ohrid and Metropolitan of Skopje, Kyr Kyr John VI]*[http://freearchbishop.com Free Archbishop]*[http://amnesty.org/en/library/asset/EUR05/001/2006/en/28018728-d44a-11dd-8743-d305bea2b2c7/eur050012006en.html Amnesty International]
[[Category:Bishops]]
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