• Славиша Недељковић
Keywords: Metropolitans, the Serbian nation, Serbia, Turkey, Prizren, Porta, the Patriarchate of Constantinople, Greeks, the church


In the social and spiritual life of Serbs in Turkey, the church had extremely great importance. National gathering of Serbs in the Ottoman Empire was possible only under the auspices of the church, so the church issue was one of the most important issues of the Serbian nation in Turkey. In addition to the spiritual, the Church at the time had a great educational importance. Namely, since the Turkish authorities recognized the right to open and run schools only to religious communities, the church was the center of spreading literacy among the Serbian nation in Old Serbia. Therefore the absence of the Serbian Church in Old Serbia and Macedonia caused major problems to the Serbian national activity in the Serbian lands under Turkish rule. Since the Church in Turkey had the landmark of ethnicity, in addition to religious and educational role, the struggle for the Serbian Metropolitan positions in Old Serbia had great political significance. Therefore, the appointment of Dionizije Petrović for Raška-Prizren Metropolitan represented a significant diplomatic success of Serbia. The arrival of Serbian Metropolitan at the head of Raska and Prizren diocese opened the possibility to strengthen the national and political activity in Old Serbia through the church institutions across. Serbian population across Old Serbia got an opportunity for more intensive actions in the church-educational and cultural level, while the Serbia itself got the powerful strongpoint for a successful implementation of the national policy in the European part of Turkey.


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