BELGRADE – The decoration works on the dome of the Church of Saint Sava in Belgrade began on Tuesday and are slated for completion by the end of next year, said the signatories of a donation agreement for the works.

The agreement was entered into by the Society for the Construction of the Church of Saint Sava, Russia’s Gazprom Neft and a Moscow-based international fund for assistance to UNESCO.

It was signed in the Presidency of Serbia by President Tomislav Nikolic and Patriarch Irenaeus of the Serbian Orthodox Church, Alexander Dybal of Gazprom Neft and Manana Valentinovna Popova, a representative of the fund.

Nikolic thanked Russian President Vladimir Putin for making the idea of decorating the dome feasible.

“This is brotherly, friendly, Christian assistance,” Nikolic said, adding it came like “rain that falls when it is needed the most.”