Report of Archbishop Serhiy of Ternopil and Kremenets to Head of UOC-MP on new Attempt to Seize Church of Musorivtsi by Representatives of UOC-KP
On January 4, 2010, the web site of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church-Moscow Patriarchate (UOC-MP) posted a report of Archbishop Serhiy of Ternopil and Kremenets to Metropolitan Volodymyr about another attempt to seize the Holy Protection Church in the village Musorivtsi by representatives of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church-Kyivan Patriarchate (UOC-KP). Please see the text below.
Report of Archbishop Serhiy of Ternopil and Kremenets to His Beatitude Metropolitan Volodymyr about the new attempt to seize the Holy Protection Church of Musorivtsi by representatives of the UOC-KP
The Most Blessed Volodymyr,
Metropolitan of Kyiv and All Ukraine,
Primate of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church
Archbishop Serhiy of Ternopil and Kremenets
the Most Blessed Metropolitan!
Forgive me for troubling You on these pre-holiday days. It is with pain that I inform You that on Sunday, January 3, 2010, in the village of Musorivtis, Zbarazh Region, the subsequent attempt to seize our church was organized by the religious community of the UOC-KP, headed by their priest Svyatoslav Shvets, with participation of unknown persons (according to the village residents they were members of the national organizations such as Svoboda).
At the end of the divine service approximately 100 people started to beat with hammers and chisels the central church entrance doors in the presence of police, Village Council deputy Nina Feitsaruk who ordered these illegal actions, and Secretary of the Village Council of Kapustin Maria Drapala.
Having broken the bar and the lock, but not succeeding to enter the church, they continued the attack through the sacristan's doors. They broke the door with an axe, and chopped them with a large five-meter wooden log all to pieces. With the same log, bench, and wooden bolsters they beat the priests and parishioners, who fiercely held back the attackers and protected the church by God's miracle.
They also broke the windows, and threw into the church metal objects, wooden planks with nails, pyrotechnics, smoke pellets, burning cloths, etc. They had gasoline cans and lots of rubber with the help of which they threatened to destroy the church if they do not get it.
All that happened in the presence and at the passivity of the police of Zbarazh, led by Bohdan Tabaka, and lasted until our parishioners, beaten badly and unconscious, were taken away by an ambulance. One of the defenders is in the emergency room.
After this bloody assault the UOC-KP “priest” Svyatoslav Shvets thanked the militants with a roll of bills and asked them to make the combat assault of the church more successful. But this is the Feast of Nativity of Christ! Don't these people have the God's fear at all?
I humbly ask Your Beatitude's holy prayers and also ask You to turn to the higher authorities and to stop the lawlessness against the Orthodox community that is more than 300 years old, to protect their right to pray on their own Ukrainian land.
Humble servant of Your Beatitude,
Archbishop of Ternopil and Kremenets