Tomos of love or hatred?
Each of us, wishing to approach the Cup, goes the way of confession and repentance. Why do the schismatics believe that hatred-charged one can go to the Eucharist?
In the media space of Ukraine, the theme of the Tomos and autocephaly has long been topical news. The media is full of cheering reports that we should wait a little more and gain a landmark "victory" – "patriotic" schismatic church structures will be recognized overnight as canonical, and Moskals from the UOC will be immediately "torn into rags".
One thing is when unbelievers stuffed with media propaganda behave like this. But if a person calls himself a Christian, prays, reads the Gospel and at the same time is filled with terrible hatred of anyone – it causes bewilderment. How can Christianity go hand in hand with hatred?
"Whoever says that he is in the light, but hates his brother, is still in darkness" (1Jn 2: 9), wrote John the Theologian. What kind of Christianity can we talk about if there is such hatred in people that they do not even know how to keep it? Hatred and anger are spiritual darkness, and the person infected by them lives in darkness, in which there is no God. Isn’t it clear?
How terrible is that in this state they do not even think of repentance. They speak of the union of the Orthodox Christians of Ukraine, while they also have anger towards the believers of the canonical Church. And it becomes clear that there is no real faith and the desire to be saved – because the minor is placed above the major. Ukraine is above God, the Church, love, and truth. And hate is the fruit of this terrible spiritual error.
When you watch videos of seizing Orthodox churches with beating up old women, breaking doors, expelling believers - you realize that if these people somehow get church recognition and the notorious Tomos, there will be the biggest catastrophe in Ukraine of all that has happened before. If evil is called good, and falsehood is called truth not only in the world but also in the Church, it will be a spiritual Sodom, for which God can punish quickly and mercilessly. The "Church" of hatred cannot enter into communion with the Church of love!
When you watch videos of seizing Orthodox churches with beating up old women, breaking doors, expelling believers - you realize that if these people somehow get church recognition and the notorious Tomos, there will be the biggest catastrophe in Ukraine of all that has happened before.
There is still one deeply disturbing thought. The entrance to the Church is always possible only through one gate: repentance. "Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins; and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit "(Acts 2:38) - this is the formula for entering the Church for all time. How do people want to return to the Church from the schism ... just like that, without repentance? It sounds absurd!
After all, we, the parishioners of the UOC, understand when sinning that by sins we take ourselves away from the Church, from Her love – and go to confession. And there the priest offers to God a prayer request about us: "Reconcile and unite him in the Holy Church of Yours". And only after that, we come to the Cup. How do the schismatics want to go to the Lord's Table just like that – coming from the street? Indeed, in the darkness they are. Poor, unhappy people ...
You cannot enter the Church without repentance, and Christianity cannot have hatred for another person. While these simple truths do not become clear to those who are now rubbing their hands, anticipating the Tomos, – they can already be considered losers. Not before people – but before Christ, whose clothes they are trying to tear once again.
But the All-Seeing sees everything, and Love will not allow hatred to triumph forever. The call of the true Church still sounds: repent! Believers of the UOC pray that this appeal will be accepted by those who are still able to accept it, and who wants to get rid of the terrible hatred for their brothers by blood and faith. Repentance in our situation is not only the path to the Kingdom of God but also the only path to ecclesiastical and civil unity.
"Whosoever hateth his brother is a murderer; but you know that no murderer has eternal life "(1 John 3:15), warns John the Theologian. God grant this call to be heard in time and the church situation in Ukraine to be solved only by repentance – and not by the violent interference of external political forces.