Ukrainian Orthodox Church declares independence from Moscow


Eastern Europe


Head of Ukraine's Orthodox Church of Moscow Patriarchy Metropolitan Onufry conducts a service. Photo AFP, Vasily Maximov

The Ukrainian Church under Moscow Patriarchate (UOC) has decided to cut ties with the Russian Orthodox Church. The Church appeals to Ukrainian and Russian authorities to continue the negotiation process and stop the bloodshed.

This is the result of a meeting of representatives of the Ukrainian clergy on Friday.

The Ukrainian Church condemned the Russian Invasion and disagree with the position of Patriarch Kirill on the war. According to them, the war is a violation of the commandment "Thou shall not kill". The clergy expressed condolences "to all those who suffered in the war" in a statement on its website.

Lack of unity

The Council of clergy further expresses its "deep regret" over the "lack of unity in Ukrainian Orthodoxy." "It is especially unfortunate that the recent actions of the Patriarch of Constantinople in Ukraine, which resulted in the formation of the "Orthodox Church of Ukraine", only deepened misunderstandings and led to physical confrontation."

The clergy further calls on Ukrainian authorities to stop the seizure of churches and forced transfers of parishes of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church. Recently, several Ukrainian regions decided to ban activities of the Ukranian Orthodox Church under the Moscow Patriarchate.



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