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Russian Orthodox Church structures were involved in preparation for Russian invasion of Ukraine

Sunday, 16 April 2023, 08:15
Russian Orthodox Church structures were involved in preparation for Russian invasion of Ukraine

Metropolitan Epiphanius of the Orthodox Church of Ukraine (OCU) has said that the structures of the Russian Orthodox Church were involved in the preparation for and implementation of Russian aggression against Ukraine.

Source: Epiphanius for Ukrainska Pravda

Quote: "It is a shame to see that the 'Russian world' has made church institutions one of the instruments of its aggression.

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The Moscow Patriarchate, headed by Kirill Gundyaev [Patriarch of the Russian Orthodox Church - ed.], is in slavish obedience to the Kremlin's tyranny and serves as its tool. The structures of the Russian Orthodox Church, and this is not only seen by us but also recognised by independent international experts, were systematically involved in the preparation for and implementation of aggression against Ukraine."

Details: According to Epiphanius, therefore, an integral part of the Ukrainian resistance is the complete severance of all ties of subordination with the Moscow Patriarchate, which still remain with some Orthodox believers in Ukraine.

"Because in words, the religious association that calls itself the UOC [Ukrainian Orthodox Church - ed.] allegedly distances itself from its patriarch and the Russian Church, but in reality, it remains subordinate to them," the Metropolitan notes.

He believes that "only a legislative prohibition for any religious organisations in Ukraine to be subordinate to Russian religious centres can remedy this situation".

Because the Kremlin has turned these centres into its centres of influence, from which Orthodox, Muslim, Protestant and other religious leaders in the Russian Federation assist the aggressor and justify its crimes.

"Ukraine has the right to defend itself against Russian hybrid aggression in the spiritual sphere in the same way it defends itself on the battlefield," Epiphanius said.

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