Constantinople: UOC-MP has no right to request the exarchs to leave Ukraine
The Ukrainian Orthodox Church (Moscow Patriarchate) has no right to request that exarchs of the Patriarchate of Constantinople leave Ukraine.
Archbishop Job (Getcha) of Telmessos of the Patriarchate of Constantinople, said in an exclusive comment to Ukrinform, commenting on the decision of the Synod of the UOC (MP), which calls the appointment of exarchs of the Patriarchate of Constantinople to Kyiv a “gross interference” in the internal affairs of the Church and contains a requirement that they leave Ukraine.
“By what right the UOC (MP) denounces the Ecumenical Patriarchate, while the UOC (MP) is not an independent entity in conducting a dialogue within the framework of inter-church relations, it is not a subject, it does not maintain correspondence in matters where the ROC participates exclusively," said Archbishop Job.
He also added that ten years ago, it was the Ecumenical Patriarch, not the exarchs who came to Kyiv without an invitation from the UOC (MP), “and yet the Church under the direction of Metropolitan Volodymyr then chose not a path of confrontation, but a path of dialogue and understanding.”
As RISU has reported, on September 7, the Ecumenical Patriarchate appointed two exarchs in Kyiv to prepare for the process of providing autocephaly.
The Russian Orthodox Church called this appointment “an invasion in its canonical territory” and threatened to break the Eucharistic communion.
On September 14, the Synod of the ROC decided to cease participation in the entities under the auspices of the Patriarchate of Constantinople and remember the Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew during the Divine Services.
On the same day, the head of the UOC-MP, Metropolitan Onufriy, reporting to the participants of the Synod of the Russian Orthodox Church, said that the clegymen of his Church would not meet exarchs of the Ecumenical Patriarch in Ukraine, as the aforementioned hierarchs came here without their blessing.
On September 17, at a meeting with the President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko in Kyiv, the exarchs of the Ecumenical Patriarchate stated that the process of granting autocephaly of the UOC is a "resolved issue".
On September 26, the Synod of the UOC-MP called the appointment of exarchs of the Ecumenical Patriarchate “a gross interference in the internal affairs of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church and the violation of its canonical territory.”