The Serbian Orthodox Church reached another decision toward ending its decades long dispute with the Macedonian Orthodox Church.

SOC determined that it is releasing the bishopries in Macedonia it has claimed for itself, and is integrating them within the Macedonian Orthodox Church, after MOC agreed to integrate the small splinter church POA within its ranks. POA was led by former MOC bishop Jovan, who sided with Serbia and was declared Archbishop of Ohrid by the Serbian church. Jovan was arrested for hate speech and fraud and spent three years in prison after his release was politically arranged.

Several of his followers will be named to the Synod of the Macedonian Orthodox Church, which is part of the agreement reached between the two churches, that will ultimately secure Serbia’s recognition of the Macedonian church.