Ukrainian church vilifies Filaret over interview with Russian television


Interfax-Religiia, 8 July 2019


The new church of Ukraine (PTsU) is up in arms over an interview of Filaret Denisenko with television channel Rossiia-24, in which he criticized in the Russian language Constantinople and his former associates.


"Illness has changed him beyond recognition. From the outside everything seems to have remained as usual. But I cannot even imagine that OUR patriarch would give an interview to Kremlin propagandists, knowing what they need him for—in order to destroy Ukraine further. Illness has made him a virtual ally of Moscow in the struggle against the tomos," PTsU spokesman Evstraty Zorya wrote on his Facebook page, calling the interview "another low point."


Evstraty is sure that Moscow, exploiting Filaret's illness, "is humiliating and destroying him, but he is unable to understand this."


The representative of the PTsU emphasized that a healthy Ukrainian could not give an interview to Russian television. (tr. by PDS, posted 8 July 2019)


Credo.Press, 8 July 2019


PTsU Honorary Patriarch Filaret, who announced on 20 June the resumption of the activity of the UPTsKP, gave an interview to a correspondent of the main government television channel of the Russian Federation, Rossiia24, Anna Afanaseva. The story, under the title "Nothing Sacred," was published on 7 July on Youtube, Gromadskoe writes.


In the interview, Filaret criticized the tomos concerning autocephaly and the activity of the Orthodox Church of Ukraine (PTsU) as a whole. He also complained to Russian television, which is under Ukrainian sanctions, about the head of the PTsU. Filaret stated that Metropolitan Epifany and the fifth president of Ukraine, Petro Poroshenko, "deceived" him. "If the question had been posed that I would move away from administration of the church, I would not have taken such conditions," Filaret maintains.


The patriarch also does not like the name of the Orthodox Church of Ukraine; in his opinion it gives evidence that the church "is not independent." Filaret said the name should be "Ukrainian Orthodox Church." "This church [the PTsU] has the right to minister only on the territory of Ukraine. Beyond the territory of Ukraine—Europe, America, Canada, even Russia, Australia—it all belongs to the patriarch of Constantinople," he declares.


The patriarch also identified the reason why the patriarchate of Constantinople did not permit him to officially head the PTsU. "They have known me 50 years. When I represented the Russian Orthodox Church in Chambesy. They know my position and my steadfastness. Therefore they did not want to deal with me, knowing that they were intending such a tomos," Filaret notes.


It is noteworthy that in the credits the television channel, which previously called Filaret a "false patriarch," did not choose to post his title, even in quotation marks. (tr. by PDS, posted 8 July 2019)

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