Page 767 - Kosovo Metohija Heritage
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i am appealing to you, our Serbian father, to help us by using your authority with the government in Belgrade. This news is 100% from original sources and i personally can vouch for its accuracy.
if that is your wish i will continue to inform you in the future about everything so that at least you have facts about our unenviable situation in Kosovo and Metohija.
Please forgive me for disturbing you with this type of news for Pascha but i had to do this, said Fr. Makarije in the conclusion of his letter.”67
Bishop Pavle of Raška and Prizren by act No 500 from june 22, 1968, wrote to the Holy Synod of Bishops as fol- lows:
“The administration of Devič Monastery has sent the executive Council of the Province of Kosovo and Metohija in Priština a petition with the following content:
“The administration of Devič Monastery, which is un- der the protection of the State as a cultural-historical mon- ument, hereby submits the following complaint and asks for your protection.
it is well known to everyone that Devič is in an isolated location in the forest and inhabited only by women. The closest village to it is Vojvodići, and our municipality is Sr- bica, which is 5 km distant from the monastery itself. every year we have, as our Municipal police are already aware of, damage done to our property by our neighbors from the villages of Lauša, Rezalo and Vojvodići, who allow their cat- tle to enter our fields planted with corn, white wheat and potatoes and our meadows. This has been reported to the Municipalityandtothenationalpolice,andasortofrecon- ciliation was achieved. This year has been horrible. We have filed reports and complained orally to the municipality and Kosovo and Metohija, as well as to the police several times.
On May 28, 1968 we submitted a written complaint and request to the Municipal Committee and the national po- lice in Srbica against the sons of Osman azem Deljević from Rezalo, who attacked the elder of Devič Monastery, abbess Paraskeva, hit her with a stick, then broke into the rooms of our workers and demanded their bell, which had been removed from their cattle caught in the wheat. The women of our workers were afraid because their husbands were at work, and they also entered into our chambers de- manding their bell. We ask whether any man should be so free as to enter into anyone’s house and among other peo- ple’s women? We filed a complaint with police, the police came out to the scene but they also threatened the police that they would report them to Kosovo and Metohija for protecting Devič.
On june 13 i went out to the estate-meadows, which were being mown. When i was near our water mill, i was approached by the same son of Osman azem Deljević from Rezalo who fought with me on May 28, 1968, who grabbed me by the arm and twisted me, almost breaking me, when
67 AHSB, Syn No 1409/1968.
a young man ran up and shouted, ’No, for God’s sake, what areyoudoing’.iimmediatelycalledourlaborerswhowere mowing the meadow and the sisters in the garden; when he saw them he ran away. This was in the afternoon at about 4–5 o’clock. i immediately went to the Police and the offi- cer on duty heard me out and made a report. Today, june 14, 1968, at about 9 o’clock one of them came to Devič itself and warned me not to go down because men from Rezalo were waiting to kill me. i do not know what to do or to whom to appeal because this is intolerable. We women do not dare go by ourselves to or own property because we are constant- ly being threatened and told: you have no business here.
They allow their cattle to enter freely into our corn, gar- dens and meadows. What are we supposed to do when someone else comes and destroys all our hard work in a few hours. We asked them nicely but to no avail; they threaten us and throw rocks at the sisters.
We have enclosed our property with a wire fence and they cut it to be able to allow their cattle to enter. They seek to inflict damage upon us at every step. We beg you, if there is a provision of the Law to end this and take us under pro- tection because we are women, it is sad that we must go out on our own property in fear. There are masons building right next to Devič and when they came for lunch, someone stole their hammer, trowels and other things. Not a day passes by that they do not disturb us, do not threaten and beat us. We ask ourselves: what is going on? We complain and nothing happens, they are more arrogant and sure of themselves. We beg you to take us under your protection andstopthisviolence.”
The above is forwarded to you for your information, wrote Bishop Pavle, noting that a special meeting regard- ing this matter was held in Devič Monastery on june 25, 1968 which was attended by the president of the Commis- sion for Religious affairs of the Socialist Republic of Serbia and the autonomous Province and a representative of the Municipal assembly in Srbica where it was promised that in the future the monastery would be given full protection for the lives of its staff and the property of the monastery.”68
On august 24, 1968, the administration of Devič Mon- astery also wrote to His Holiness Serbian Patriarch Ger- man:
“Your Holiness, bless,
We know that you are concerned with great worries and affairs by virtue of the fact that you are at the helm of the holy Serbian Orthodox Church and that therefore we should not further burden you with our burdens and prob- lems. But troubles force us to unburden ourselves to Your Holiness, as our spiritual guardian, and to ask for paternal and archpastoral assistance and protection.
We cannot, Your Holiness, live for persecution by the albanians. We simply do not know what to do to defend ourselves from terrorist attacks of the residents of the neigh-
68 AHSB, Syn No 2731/1968.
The Suffering and Persecution in Kosovo and Metohija from 1945 to 2005

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