Metropolitan Anthony (Pakanych) fears that the Ecumenical Patriarch will destroy the UOC-MP
This was stated by Metropolitan Anthony (Pakanych), chancellor of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the Moscow Patriarchate, Orthodox Life reports.
Commenting on the information about the Synod of the Ecumenical Patriarchate allegedly scheduled for January, where the episcopate of the UOC-MP will be sent under a church ban, Metropolitan Anthony said, in particular:
"It is difficult for me to comment on such information because I am not familiar with Phanar's plans. However, I recall an interview with Archbishop Job (Gecha), which he gave in 2018 to the BBC. When asked by the publication whether the situation after the Phanar recognizes the Ukrainian schism can lead to the fact that the Ecumenical Patriarch will take patriarchal dignity from the Russian Orthodox church or even cancel it, the representative of the Phanar replied the following: "If this situation persists for a long time, then, of course, the Patriarchate of Constantinople will be forced to take certain measures." Thus, an unambiguous signal was made. In fact, it was a kind of intimidation. In this context, it cannot be ruled out that the Phanar may make some, I'm not afraid of this word, absurd decision regarding the UOC."
Metropolitan Anthony also reacted to the words of Patriarch Bartholomew that all bishops of the UOC-MP are "titular", and after his decision to recognize the OCU, the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the Moscow Patriarchate is "in the status of dioceses of the Russian Orthodox Church in Ukraine."
"The words said by Patriarch Bartholomew may indicate that the Phanar is just waiting for a convenient political opportunity to destroy our church. So to speak, we are waiting for a new accession of forces in Ukraine that will raise the slogans "of army, language and faith" on the flags. After all, now, the process of pressure on the UOC has significantly decreased. So, the patriarch of Constantinople probably has to "temporarily tolerate" the UOC and its Primate. Until the first opportunity emerged to change the situation to his benefit," Metropolitan Anthony said.
Earlier, Metropolitan Anthony (Pakanych) accused the Ecumenical Patriarch that the Tomos he provided to the Ukrainian Church brought grief and suffering to the faithful of the Moscow Patriarchate. And the head of the UOC-MP called on the faithful to "protect their shrines" during the visit of the Ecumenical Patriarch to Ukraine