In the vicinity of Gnjilane, 1 km south-east of the village of Kmetovce, there are the remains of the church of the old monastery of St. Dimitrije, today more known as dedicated to St. Varvara. Written sources do not mention this cult place, while the folk (oral) tradition links the foundation of the monastery with the time of Emperor Dusan. The preserved remains of church indicate the transitional type of building between the developed (pure) cross and the shortened cross which points to the similarity with the shrine of St. Nikola in the Holy Archangels Monastery near Prizren. One-nave vaulted building with the dome over the central cross bean was leaning on the wall between priprata and naos on the western side, while on the eastern side it was supported by two columns. As to the altar space, the apse, three-sided from outside, and the niche which marked proskomidija are preserved. The church was built with stone with the modest use of brick. The remains of fresco decorations - fragments of ornaments and the busts of saints on red background - are visible in the northern-eastern corner of the shrine. Stylistic characteristics, both artistic and architectural, lead to the conclusion that it was the endowment of a landlord, most probably from the sixth decade of the 14th century. The church was partially ruined after the Kosovo Battle and completely demolished in the 18th century. Conservation works were carried out between 1966 and 1968.
OF OUR DIOCESE
Decani / Gracanica / Sopocani / Pecka Patrijarsija /