Metropolitan Pavlo (Lebid) of Vyshgorod and Chernobyl, UOC (MP): Ukrainians are simply ungrateful Russians
Metropolitan Pavlo (Lebid) of Vyshgorod and Chernobyl, UOC (MP), the abbot of the Kyiv-Pechersk Lavra, praised the Russians for their ability to cherish their shrines, and criticized Ukrainian for their inability to do the same, Religion in Ukraine reported citing Regions.ru.
Talking about the canonization of a new saint by the UOC (MP) – Petro Kalnyshevskyy, the last ataman of Zaporizhia Sich, in an interview with the portal Lavra.ua, Metropolitan Pavlo said: “His relics remain in Solovki monastery (in Russia - Ed.), Unfortunately, I have never been there. But I really want to go there, because today, when some maddening people divide us for their political ambitions, or simply through pride and, Russians and many Ukrainian directed their steps to where the joy of solitude with God reign - to Athos or Balaam!”
At the same time, the Metropolitan reproached Ukrainians and gave Russians as an example: “Previously, everybody hurried to Lavra. I think that for the time of its existence dozens of millions of people from all over the world visited it. But now everything is turned upside down, our people increasingly forget about where the spiritual heart of our country and our people is located. But the Russians, the Russians can glorify their saints, they can cherish them - that, unfortunately, we, Ukrainians, have forgotten how to do.”
He added: “But Russians are the selfsame Ukrainians, or conversely, Ukrainians are Russians. Starting from the twelfth century and until the present times, we used to be one entity, we knew our history, saw the Venerable St. Alexis and Peter, who then led the Church of Rus - not the Russian or Ukrainian Church, but the Church of Rus. How much spiritual children were brought in Kyiv-Pechersk Lavra! They are Dimitry of Rostov, Vasil of Ryazan, Tikhon of Zadonsk ... Seraphim of Sarov obtained the blessing here. They all had direct participation in the monastery life.”
But today, according to Metropolitan Pavlo, implementation of the ancient principle “divide and rule” led “to the sad hostility and confrontation between the two nations, which discourages our people from attending our common shrines.”