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State authorities open to dialogue with churches and ready to promote their activities, Ukrainian prime-minister

05.07.2017, 09:33

The state authorities are open to dialogue with the churches and are ready to promote the activities of religious organizations. Prime Minister Volodymyr Groisman said this during a meeting with the All-Ukrainian Council of Churches and Religious Organizations on July 4 in Kyiv, according to the Institute of Religious Freedom.


“The road to church should be free, and we, as a state power, are ready to help you calmly serve and strengthen our state spiritually,” the Head of Government emphasized.


The Government of Ukraine is grateful to the representatives of the clergy for their support in carrying out the necessary reforms and is ready to cooperate in order to change and strengthen Ukraine, the PM added.


“I would like to thank the Council of Churches for supporting the need for change. Today, the task of the Government and my colleagues is to offer the community solutions that will enable us to secure the situation that we deserve,” the Head of Government noted.

The Prime Minister told representatives of the clergy about the agenda of the Government's reforms, including land reform, pension reform, privatization, education and health reform, and in fact thanked the Council of Churches for reviewing and supporting medical reform.


Churches and religious organizations make an invaluable contribution to the country's life, its spiritual enrichment, and support, said Volodymyr Groisman, and called for unity in order to implement the necessary changes in the country.


In turn, members of the All-Ukrainian Council of Churches and Religious Organizations drew the Prime Minister’s attention to a number of important social issues and topical issues of state-confessional relations. The chairman of the AUCCRORO, Chairman of the Religious Directorate of Muslims of Ukraine Sheikh Ahmed Tamim, handed over to the Head of Government the appeal of the Council of Churches during the meeting.


In the appeal, the Council of Churches declared its desire to contribute to the establishment of Ukraine as a sovereign, holistic, socially just, democratic, rule of law state.


“We support your efforts to carry out reforms in Ukraine in favor of the state, the Ukrainian people. The fact that there is resistance on the part of corrupt officials, those who deal with crime, attests that we are on the right path, and those who benefit from reforms will not oppose. We stand up with you – with the Government, our government, the state, the army. You can count on the support of the churches, because we are protecting the Ukrainian state, the Ukrainian people and the Ukrainian future,” said Patriarch Filaret, Primate of the UOC of the Kyiv Patriarchate.


Religious leaders recommended the head of the Cabinet of Ministers to take measures to establish the familial and other moral values in society, in particular to raise the level of state family policy. In particular, Bishop of the UGCC Bohdan (Dziurah) drew attention to the issues of amending the Constitution of Ukraine, which should not exclude the provision that marriage in Ukraine is a union of men and women.


Also, the Council of Churches raised issues related to the introduction of military chaplains and social protection of chaplain who serve in the ATO zone. Particular attention was paid to the problems of re-registration of the statutes of religious organizations and the need to eliminate legislative norms that impede the current charitable and humanitarian activities of religious organizations.


The Council of Churches also emphasized the importance of establishing a permanent dialogue between the Government and the All-Ukrainian Parliamentary Assembly. In particular, he proposed to resume the work of the Commission securing the rights of religious organizations formed at the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine in 2008. For his part, Prime Minister Volodymyr Groisman expressed readiness to hold meetings with representatives of the Council of Churches on a regular basis.