World's best tennis player Djokovic prays in Serbian monastery

Novak Djokovic and Metropolitan Met. Joanikije. Photo: mitropolija.com

Djokovic venerated the relics of Saint Basil at Ostrog Monastery after being deported from Australia due to his stance on COVID vaccination.

World number one tennis player Novak Djokovic visited the Ostrog Monastery of the Serbian Orthodox Church in Montenegro after the Australian authorities deported him from the country due to their unwillingness to see a well-known tennis player in the country who advocates voluntary vaccination, reports the Montenegrin-Littoral Metropolis of the SOC on its website.

Djokovic prayed and venerated the relics of the founder of the monastery, St. Basil of Ostrog, the Wonderworker. In the monastery, the athlete talked with the Metropolitan Joanikije of Montenegro and the Littoral. He discussed with the bishop the developments of the past month related to his attempt to enter the Grand Slam tournament, the Australian Open, his detention by the authorities and deportation.

“After visiting the monastery shrines, communication with the dear guest continued in the dining room of the monastery, where he spoke about the latest events and temptations that Novak has been going through over the last month. Metropolitan Joanikije wished Novak to return to the battlefield as soon as possible and again do what he glorified not only himself but also his people and his country,” reports Montenegrin-Littoral Metropolis of the SOC.

As a sign of prayerful memory, the hierarch of the Serbian Church presented Djokovic with the icon of St. Basil of Ostrog, so that he would be his helper in all his ways.

Novak Djokovic arrived in Australia in early January 2022 to participate in the Grand Slam tennis tournament. At the airport, the tennis player was detained allegedly because of an incorrectly issued visa and placed in a hotel for migrants. Djokovic appealed to the court, which declared the detention illegal and released him.

The sportsman spent several training sessions at the tournament, after which the Minister for Immigration of Australia, Alex Hawke, took the sole decision to deport the athlete. The official was unhappy that Djokovic was not vaccinated against the coronavirus and was medically cleared due to the fact that he had been ill with COVID-19 before.

Explaining his decision, the Australian minister said that "Djokovic's continued presence in Australia could lead to an increase in anti-vaccination sentiment in the Australian community".

As reported, Novak Djokovic said in an interview that before he is an athlete, he is an Orthodox Christian.

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