At Filaret’s request, ombudsman Denisova to check the legality of the UOC-KP liquidation
The Verkhovna Rada Commissioner for Human Rights, Lyudmyla Denisova, has said that she will appeal to the Minister of culture, youth and sports, Volodymyr Borodyansky, with a request to provide full information on the liquidation of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the Kyiv Patriarchate. Denisova announced this on Facebook after having received Patriarch Emeritus Filaret in her office. This is reported by Radio Liberty.
"During the reception, His Holiness Patriarch Filaret advised that Ukrainian citizens who consider themselves laity of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the Kyiv Patriarchate are contacting him being derived of their right to remain faithful of this Church. In January 2019, the Ministry of Culture of Ukraine terminated the registration of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church - Kyiv Patriarchate, including the Kyiv Patriarchy of the UOC-KP, as a legal entity," Denisova said.
The Ombudsman has noted that she intends to check the legality of the decision to liquidate the UOC-KP as a legal entity.
"Conclusions will be made after the indepth study of the official response," Denisova said.
On December 15, 2018, the Unification Council was held, where the Orthodox Church of Ukraine was established. Metropolitan Epifaniy became its Primate. The OCU was created with the participation of the Patriarch of the UOC-Kyiv Patriarchate Filaret at that time, and he became the Patriarch Emeritus of the OCU.
However, in June 2019, the Assembly that was held in St Volodymyr Cathedral and chaired by Patriarch Emeritus Filaret decided to resume the existence of the liquidated Church of the UOC-KP and to revoke the recognition of the Orthodox Church of Ukraine. The OCU immediately called the decision of this meeting legally null and void.
In June 2019, the Synod of the Orthodox Church of Ukraine stripped Patriarch Emeritus Filaret of his rights of a diocesan bishop. The Synod also subordinated to Metropolitan Epifaniy of Kyiv and all Ukraine directly all the parishes and monasteries of Kyiv, which were subordinated to the UOC-KP until December 15, 2018.
In November 2019, the Court of Appeal allowed the liquidation of the UOC-KP. In December, at a meeting of the Bishops' Council of the Orthodox Church of Ukraine, Metropolitan Epifaniy announced the legal termination of the religious organizations "Kyiv Patriarchate of the UOC-KP" and "Patriarchy of UAOC".
On February 5, this year, the OCU stripped Patriarch Emeritus Filaret of his rights and duties related to the administration of the diocese and removed him from the Synod. At the same time, he remains part of the episcopate of the Orthodox Church of Ukraine.