News and events

New consecration into Episcopacy ( 13.07.2005 )

On the feast of the Holy Apostles Peter and Paul, in the Bitola cathedral of the Holy Great-martyr Demetrius, a Hierarch’s Divine Liturgy was celebrated, officiated by Archbishop Stephen of Ohrid and Macedonia and his concelebrants Metropolitan Cyril of Polog and Kumanovo, Metropolitan Timothy of Debar, Kičevo and Plaošnik, Metropolitan Peter of Prespa and Pelagonia, Metropolitan Nahum of Strumica, Metropolitan Agathangel of Bregalnica, the titular Episcope Methodius of Velika, as well as the numerous clergy of all the dioceses of the Macedonian Orthodox Church. At the Divine Liturgy, His Beatitude Archbishop Stephen consecrated the archimandrite Clement a titular Episcope of Heraclea. At the Liturgy among the present were the president of the Commission for Relations with the Religious Communities and Groups, Mr. Cane Mojanoski; several MPs of the R. Macedonia Government; the rector of the Skopje “Saints Cyril and Methodius” University, Mr. Đorđi Martinovski; and many other state representatives. The countless faithful from all Macedonia, present at the consecration of Episcope Clement, partook of the Holy Mysteries of Christ.











Sermon of the auxiliary Bishop Kliment of Herakleia,

held on the day of his ordination in Bitola,

                                                         on the Feast of St. Peter and Paul, July 12th 2005


In the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit,    

Beloved in our Lord brothers and sisters,


            Standing in front of this sacred and Eucharistic gathering, lead and headed by You, Most Blessed Ruler, with the Prelates, the Hierarchs and the people of God in Macedonia, I dare confess what I see – and I see the shining and the reflection of the light which is not of this world, but is sent into the world for the economy of the Church. And while I cannot ignore the feeling in me, felt after the graceful rite of bishop's laying of hands, that "He is growing in me, in my humble heart, like the Sun", looking at You, with the New Blessing I speak the glorious blessing: "You make the people to be in the image of God, and the One Who Can't be Put Anywhere to take form in them... so He may shine like my God shone in His Resurrection". This undying light warms the soul of our Macedonian people for ages, the people whose common repentance gave birth to us. From generation to generation, the depth of its heart, washed by tears, clears up to become a bright eye with which it sees the Divine Light coming out from the Father, shown by the Son on Mount Tabor, and which is given by the Spirit here and now as life.

            In history, this uncreated light is focused in the sacrament of the Cross and the Resurrection. The bishop in today's Macedonia humbly bears his bishop's cross, inherited in a spiritual inheritance which cannot be stolen, from Holy Apostle Paul, and from St. Clement, called New Paul by the Prelates of the Ohrid Archbishopric. He got it to follow Christ, continuing the feat of climbing to Golgota. He inherited it to be crucified in the crucified Church and to resurrect in the resurrected Church, witnessing the light of the Resurrection in Macedonia. The God-illuminated bishop knows, from his own experience, that the Cross of Golgota and the heavenly glory are one and the same thing and, therefore, his heart is not only unafraid, but also prepared to bear it. By the call of the Holy Bishop's Synod, the elected bishop leaves his monastic cell in order to take the bishop's cross among the people and to witness the essential.

Witnessing today means believing in life touched by eternity. The prayer is an experience of the eternal life. The bishop is a witness of the Gospel. But if the bishop's words do not bring life, they become mere empty words, which is nothing less than a betrayal of the Gospel. He did not agree to oversee, to be a bishop, because of power, but from exhaustion (emptying oneself from his own self), lead by the personal state of the spirit which demands offering one's life for the other. He knows he should be adorned with Christ's humbleness, and the Macedonian Orthodox Church must constantly radiate with the exact same humbleness, meekness and gentleness if it wants the people to recognise it as their spiritual mother. To recognise it the same way I have recognised it, because exactly here in Macedonia I was a witness of my own spiritual birth in pain, and I learned that the Holy Spirit is the Lord, and our Holy Church a fruitful bearer of His Grace, which abundantly gives spiritual birth to persons who stand faced with the Living God.






That's why I thank the Tri-personal God for all the gifts I got by His providence and economy. I have been born in a historical time and space which are cross by themselves here, in the restless Balkans. Here my bodily parents raised me loving me, and the parents that gave spiritual birth to me tought me to love. I am endlessly grateful to them. When elder Sophronios of Essex wrote to me that he prays for the Mother of God to show me the way to Her Son, he has prophesized Her Garden on the Holy Mount Athos. I consider my undeserved staying there for two years a great gift from Bogorodica (the One Who Gave Birth to God). I received my monastic name Kliment from the graceful abbot of the Gregoriat Monastery Georgios, a suffering elder with a heart of a mother and a father. The call of Mother Church and the experience I got (that the tangled lines of the natural laws are untangled by the mysterious work of the Holy Spirit) were decisive for me and my older brother Naum to return to Macedonia from Holy Mount Athos.

After twelve years of monastic life, I agreed to work on God's field together with the Metropolitan Petar of Prespa and Pelagonija as his auxiliary bishop. In this spiritual relation with You, Most Holy Ruler, we will surely pass through Christ's states of Cross, Sepulchre, Descent to Hades, and Resurrection after three days. However, that's exactly why I believe that our community is more than trustworthy, because it is a community in the faith in the Crucified and Resurrected Lord. Our sinergy will be for the good economy of the Church in Prespa and Pelagonija, and if it be so, I am certain that from here, the light of the local Church will radiate also to the Universal Church. Because our call is an apostolic one, which means universal, our responsibility is equal to that.

I feel a special arch-pastor's concern about the young people in Macedonia, heavily tested and extremely tense by the everyday stress and the fear from the uncertain future. Let us make possible for the modern man to hear the voice of the Church through the word of the Bishop, which should be warm, gentle, humane, and most of all existential, so it can touch the internal world of the other. Following his drama, let us witness to him that in Christ there is no tragedy. I suggest, as a starting point, that we should accept his sincerity as only criterion for the quality of his life.

          From today I, being a prelate, am dedicated to God and His Church, serving the Cross and the Gospel. I will serve Him and the people, which is His inheritance, in the way that He Himself tought us saying "...But he that is greatest among you shall be your servant, And whosoever will be chief among you, let him be your servant. For whether is greater, he that sitteth at meat, or he that serveth? Is not he that sitteth at meat? But I am among you as he that serveth.". As a servant of God I shall serve this people of God actualising the ethos of sacrificing for others, an ethos that comes out of the Holy Eucharist and the life of discipline.  Jorneying to Home, I shall not be deaf to his sighs, neither will I turn my head from the smell from his wounds, but rather, I shall look up to Christ, "the meek and humble at heart", who as the merciful Samaritan pours "wine and oil" on man's wounds in order to heal them from the deathly pain. I ask from you all here, pray for it to be so, and I shall dare to utter the words of the Apostle, who says: "Lord, You act!" It is time for the Lord to act! So His All Holy Name should be glorified, of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, now and always and in all the ages. Amen!