Ukrainian Orthodox Church-MP Say Issues between Greek Catholics and Orthodox Should Be Solved Directly, Not in Moscow
The Commission of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church (UGCC) for Promoting Christian Unity and the Economic Commission of the Roman Catholic Church (RCC) in partnership with the Institute of Thomas Aquinas held a roundtable "Ukraine in the Orthodox-Catholic Dialogue" on June 7 in Kyiv.
It was attended by the president of the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity, Cardinal Kurt Koch, Archbishop Thomas Edward Gullickson, Apostolic Nuncio in Ukraine, head of the UGCC Patriarch Sviatoslav Shevchuk, Archbishop Petro Malchuk of the RCC, and a representative of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church-Moscow Patriarchate (UOC-MP), Father Mykola Danylevych.
On the eve of the event, a discussion was held on social networks: Is it possible today to speak of ecumenism in Ukraine? On the one hand, it is not easy because, according to Patriarch Shevchuk, in today's postmodern world unity is no longer an inherent value. Instead, the tolerance of plurality is valued. Consequently, Christians, tempted by this postmodern world, settle down in their divisions.
"So we, Ukrainian Christians, have committed a sin against ecumenism by leaving the matter to the diplomats and politicians. It is essential that bishops, pastors, preachers, and priests constantly speak about unity among Christians with their faithful," said the Primate of the Greek Catholics
The issue of the alleged complicated relations between the UGCC and the UOC-MP in Galicia, which Patriarch Kirill has referred to for many years, supposedly prevents a meeting with the pope. Furthermore, it arises by itself, first, in the context of the theme of the roundtable, and second, in the long discussions in the press service of the Russian Orthodox Church and the media.
"The issue is within the competence of Patriarch Kirill himself or his assistants,” said Father Mykola Danylevych. “Now it is urgent for the problems that were (or are) between Greek Catholics and Orthodox in Ukraine to be addressed directly, that is, between ourselves and not in Moscow or the Vatican, which are far and may not always be aware of what is actually happening. This refers to an interview with our Metropolitan Anthony (Pakanych), who said that now there is no tension between Greek Catholics and Orthodox in Galicia. The bishop said this after he visited the Lviv Eparchy and had a discussion with the ruling bishop there, Bishop Filaret. I cannot comment on his words, but they line up with reality.”