Not autocephaly but repentance is needed to heal schism, – UOC hierarch
The desire to legalize non-canonical structures in Ukraine is masked under the initiative to create a local church, said Archbishop Theodosius of Boyarka.
To overcome the church schism in Ukraine, it is not autocephaly but repentance that is necessary, said Archbishop Theodosius of Boyarka, Vicar of the Kiev Metropolitanate, in an interview with the portal Pravoslavie.ru.
According to the bishop, the talk that autocephaly will relieve internal tension and disobedience with the schismatics does not correspond to reality.
"They say that they (schismatics, – Ed.) will return to the bosom of the Church," said Archbishop Theodosius. "But this is a lie. No autocephaly will heal anything, everyone understands this perfectly. To heal the schism, it is not autocephaly that is needed but repentance, awareness of one's ecclesiological inappropriateness, as a consequence, – the fulfilment of the "sacraments" and the legal ordination of their "priesthood". Are they ready for this now? On the contrary, we hear from the schismatics increasingly aggressive rhetoric about the seizure of Lavras, temples, etc."
According to the hierarch, there is a regular substitution of concepts in the Ukrainian church issue.
"The UOC KP does not need any "autocephaly", that is independence," said Vladyka Theodosius. "They do not depend on anyone and are "autocephalous". This structure needs not autocephaly but legalization in the world church community. That's what they long for. But at the same time, they do not want to enter through the door but try to climb over the fence."
In this case, according to the hierarch, Patriarch Bartholomew is unlikely to violate the canonical order in the Church for the sake of legalizing the Ukrainian schisms.
"In this regard, there is a great hope for the meeting of His Holiness Patriarch Kirill and Bartholomew, scheduled for the end of August. Knowing the wisdom, canonical firmness and diplomatic experience of our Patriarch, I share the hope of the Ukrainian flock that this meeting will not only relieve tension on the Ukrainian issue but will also bring general warming and be constructive for inter-Orthodox relations," concluded Archbishop Theodosius.