Pantelimon's location lends itself to the holding of important events such as weddings and entertaining foreign visitors. As you can see the day we were there they were expecting a Chinese delegation. They were setting a dining area up behind the church overlooking the restaurant terrace.
Millennium Cross was full of controverse, during the construction. Because Macedonian Orthodox Church was unable to collect all the money for the construction, Macedonian Government lead by Primeminister Ljubco Georgievski, put donation of almost 2 Million Euros and helped to build this Cross .This was a trigger event for communist`s opposition to start a rampage of public attacks through media saying that Georgievski is wasting money on "ridiculous thing". Some hard core communists went so far saying that Georgievski with his policy killed spirit od Skopje, and "now the city looks like a grave with a cross (Millennium Cross) on the top of it". When Georgievski fell down from the power, all accusations towards Cross stopped. Now nobody complains about this Cross.
But true Orthodox Christians are proud of this Cross. It is a symbol of their faith in God and Christianism. It is now all over. At this moment (Spring 2003), the Cross is only thing that has been built. Our Orthodox Church is planing to build a small Orthodox monastery next to the Cross, and a proper fence that will surround that area, and will keep intruders away from the Cross. Hope we, Macedonian people and state, will collect funds to finish this project in near future.
This church, aside from being in a fabulous site on Vodno mountain, contains some very fine frescoes. Pictures are not allowed to protect the paintings -- so the next tip will be a picture from the web.
And you see here that the sun shines on Panteleimon too!
Just to clear things up: Vodno is the mountain, Panteleimon is the monastery and Nerezi is the small town:)
This fresco is perhaps the most famous in Macedonia as an example of its period.
One of the stone grave markers set in the terrace next to the church. It looks quite old, but I can't make out the date.
The people at the restaurant are not the only ones enjoying their food on Vodno mountain. Here are few locals grazing happily ;)
You can barely see Skopsko Crna Gore for the summer haze. The white "boomerang" on the right is the city stadium.
The monastery church dedicated to Sv. Panteleimon is located 8 km south-west from Skopje on Vodno mountain. The church was built in 1164.