The Macedonian Orthodox Church is resuming its decades long talks with the Serbian Orthodox Church about its future status, after the Ecumenical Patriarch admitted the Macedonian church in canonical unity with the other Orthodox churches. There are widespread rumors that Ohrid and Pec are finalizing their talks and that the move by the Phanar was timed ahead of a broad agreement between the two churches.
Serbia claims that Macedonia should be part of its clerical jurisdiction, after conquering it a century ago, but the Macedonian church declared its full independence in 1967. Since then, the Serbian church has worked to block its recognition by other churches.
An important issue will be the possible future role of Jovan Vraniskovski, a former bishop of the Macedonian Orthodox Church who was defrocked and even imprisoned for a year and half after he switched to the Serbian church. Serbia considers him the legitimate bishop of Ohrid and will insist that he or other pro-Serbian priests have a major role in the Macedonian church.