"Rise of a Unified Local Church to Unite all Orthodox is inevitable," - Yelensky

14.04.2023, 13:29
"Rise of a Unified Local Church to Unite all Orthodox is inevitable," - Yelensky - фото 1
The Ukrainian Council of Churches and Religious Organizations (UCCRO) considers it impossible for religious organizations with centers of influence in Russia to be present on the territory of Ukraine. According to Victor Yelensky, the head of the State Service for Ethnic Policy and Freedom of Conscience, this statement will have a serious impact on the development of state-church relations

Source: Facty

The UCCRO also supported the state's position regarding the Kyiv-Pechersk Lavra and emphasized that it is a Ukrainian shrine and should be accessible to all Ukrainians.

"The government's draft law, which does not allow the activity of religious organizations with centers in Russia, will contribute to the security of Ukraine. It will prevent the influence of the Moscow Patriarchate, which, in turn, is not just under the influence but under the full control of the Kremlin, on religious organizations in Ukraine," explained Yelensky.

The bill assumes that the final say on the matter of preventing the activities of the UOC MP in Ukraine will rest with the court. "The main idea is that religion cannot be a channel for an aggressor country's influence on the Ukrainian religious environment. The Moscow Patriarchate is entirely focused on destroying Ukraine, its identity, cultural and confessional code. Therefore, such influence is completely unacceptable for Ukraine. This is about dismantling the structures through which this influence flows, not about waging war against ordinary believers and priests. This is the essence of both the bill and the policy being implemented by the Ethnopolitics service," said Viktor Yelenskyi. The head of the department emphasized that, in reality, Ukraine is perhaps the country with the greatest religious freedom in Europe. "When it comes to not allowing a state commission into a building owned by the state, this is certainly not about religious freedom. I am pleased that the Ministry of Culture's commission has already begun work in the 112th building of the Kyiv-Pechersk Lavra. The reserve requires an audit, and this audit will be carried out," he said.

The dismantling of the structures of the Moscow Patriarchate in Ukraine should take place without violating the sector of freedom of conscience, that is, within the framework of Ukrainian legislation.

Society has accumulated outrage over the actions of the Moscow Patriarchate. It is important that this outrage does not turn into violence. The outrage is related to the fact that the greatest shrine was in the hands of the Moscow Patriarchate. The Moscow Patriarchate established a monopoly on this shrine and did not allow other Ukrainian churches there. In order to restore justice, the State Service for Ethnic Policy and Freedom of Conscience in Ukraine has created this commission," said the Chairman of the organization.

Yelensky believes that the emergence of a single local Orthodox Church in Ukraine that unites all Orthodox believers is inevitable. "The state, starting from December of last year, has been acting with sufficient prudence. Although it has been tough. Sanctions have been imposed on some individuals. Some of them have been deprived of Ukrainian citizenship. But at the same time, the state shows a possible way out - this is a break with the center that seeks to destroy Ukraine," he said.