UOC-MP clergy request Patriarch Bartholomew to help them sever relations with the Russian Orthodox Church and Kirill
In their appeal, the clergymen of the UOC-MP have condemned Russia's military aggression against Ukraine and are asking Patriarch Bartholomew for support and advice to overcome conflicts in Ukrainian Orthodoxy.
They admit they do not yet know what canonical path they should follow to unite all Orthodox Christians in Ukraine into a single local church. Therefore, they are looking for a compromise, transitional option that is acceptable to everyone, since not all clergy of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church are now ready to join the Orthodox Church of Ukraine:
"We openly and fully condemn Russia's Godless military aggression against our homeland – Ukraine. In this regard, thousands of clergy and parishioners of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church are already striving for full independence from the Moscow Patriarchate. But, despite our numerous repeated requests for this, changes in the Ukrainian Orthodox Church are deliberately slowed down and do not occur. Bishops, priests, deacons and parishioners are under pressure from church leaders who defend the interests of Patriarch Kirill, and church repressions are taking place. Our situation is further complicated because we do not yet know what canonical path we should follow to unite all Orthodox Christians in Ukraine into a single local church. We are trying to find a compromise, possibly a transitional option that is acceptable to everyone, since not all clergy of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church are now ready to join the Orthodox Church of Ukraine. We hope that with the help of Universal Orthodoxy, we will be able to overcome conflicts in Ukrainian Orthodoxy," the appeal says.
The clergymen of the UOC-MP also condemned the position of Patriarch Kirill, who openly supports Russia's aggression against Ukraine.
"In these terrible and mournful days, we were also shocked by the position of Moscow Patriarch Kirill, who continues to consider Ukraine his canonical territory. Not only did he not oppose the war, but he also publicly supports the Russian military invasion of Ukraine in every possible way. Patriarch Kirill continues to fervently and publicly support the aggressive terrorist actions of the president of the Russian Federation, Vladimir Putin, who has already been recognized as a war criminal. Patriarch Kirill and most bishops of the Russian Orthodox Church continue to spread ethnophyletic pseudo-theological grounds among the faithful to justify the war of the Russian Federation against our people, which directly contribute to its continuation," the priests of the UOC-MP who want to withdraw from the jurisdiction of the Russian Orthodox Church note.