Pravoslavie.ru — 7/29/2013
Serbian Orthodox Church (SPC) Patriarch Irinej said at the end of his visit to St. Petersburg and Moscow that Serbia is not running away from Europe, but cannot join Europe as it is now under the conditions that are being imposed on it.
"We do not have the right to renounce our spirituality, our culture, everything that makes us a nation. This is why I hope the people will consciously gather around the Church and thank God for giving us a chance to preserve the apostolic faith," the Patriarch said in an interview for the Voice of Russia, expressing hope Serbia will become stronger over time, both in the spiritual and the political sense.
Asked if Serbia can keep its Orthodox roots once it joins the EU, Patriarch Irinej said "the present spiritual state of Europe is pathetic."
"Like Nietzsche said 'God is dead' there. Still, a few little islands of church life remain," he said.