OCU speaker explains the prerequisites for Patriarch Kirill’s visit to Ukraine
Archbishop Yevstratiy Zorya, Deputy Chair of the Department of External Relations of the OCU, has said that Patriarch Kirill of the Russian Orthodox Church will never be able to visit Ukraine because he is responsible for the death of tens of thousands of Ukrainians in the Russian-Ukrainian war.
This was stated by the Ukrainian clergyman in an interview with journalist Sonia Koshkina, Vgolos reports.
“The fact that he would like to come here is one thing. As long as there is no peace between Russia and Ukraine, as long as Russia is at war, he cannot come here. Not just because he is such a religious leader, he takes such a position, and he is an official of the Russian government, protected by the Federal Security Service of the Russian Federation. And just imagine that the FSB of the Russian Federation comes here and secures him (ensures the safety of Kirill. – Ed.) in accordance with all these protocols, as they always do during visits abroad, ... Yevstratiy Zorya said.
He also told the story of how Kirill came to Ukraine during the time of the fugitive ex-president Viktor Yanukovych.
“I remember very well how he was accompanied by a bus with machine gunners. The minibus was leaving the territory of the monastery. I lived across the road from the Lavra and saw through my windows the motorcade and the minibus with open doors leaving with armed people sitting. This was during Yanukovych's tenure. If they were so much afraid even in those times ... " said the Archbishop of OCU.”
Moreover, he said that the way to Ukraine is closed to Kirill until he repents for Russia's crimes.
“Until the Moscow Patriarch is ready to come here with the words "we forgive and ask for forgiveness” until he is ready to come to the wall near St Michael's and stand on at least one knee in front of the dead, as Willy Brandt did in Warsaw as German Chancellor when he first arrived as head of state after the WWII, the Moscow Patriarch has nothing to do here. Well, and even more so from the ecclesiastical point of view, until he is ready to recognize the OCU as a local Orthodox Church,” the Archbishop concluded.