Local maneuvers affect Ukrainian church politics


Interfax-Religiia, 1 March 2019


In the village of Staraia Zhadova of Chernovitsy oblast, where the head of the new church of Ukraine (PTsU), Epifany Dumenko, spent his childhood, the parish of the church of the Archangels Michael and Gabriel made the decision to remain in the bosom of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church (UPTs).


As the press service of the Chernovitsy-Bukovina diocese of the UPTs reports on its webpage in Facebook, the rector of the church reminded the parishioners at a meeting that according to a missive received in the early 1990s from Patriarch Alexis II, the UPTs is independent in its administration. At the same time, the priest noted that the same cannot be said about the church created in Ukraine late last year, because according to the tomos that was received, "without Bartholomew, they cannot even pick up a spoon in order to eat."


As the result of voting, the parishioners, by an absolute majority of votes, testified to their desire to remain loyal to the canonical Ukrainian church.


One of the active supporters of the PTsU, who promoted among village residents the transfer into the new church structure, suggested this to the rector also, to which he replied: "I am ready to concede you a place in the Kingdom of Heaven and I agree to kneel at the entrance, but I will not lead people into Tartarus and eternal perdition."


According to a report of the press service of the diocese, a meeting of the territorial community is planned for the village of Staraia Zhadova, in order thereby to still transfer the local parish into the PTsU. The press service notes that this is a rather strange decision, inasmuch as there already is in the village a church of the former Kiev patriarchate, which, according to local residents, is attended by about 10 to 15 persons. (tr. by PDS, posted 1 March 2019)

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