In Transcarpathia raiders threaten UOC priest with kidnapping of his son

Radicals regularly arrange actions of intimidation of the UOC priests

Nationalists threaten to kidnap the son of a Transcarpathian priest of the UOC and seize several churches if he opposes the transfer to the OCU.

The dean of the Yasinia district of Khust diocese of the UOC, Father Vitaly Kremen, received threats from the nationalists and supporters of the Kiev Patriarchate, who had seized the temple of St. George the Victorious in the village of Yasinia, Rakhov district, Transcarpathian region.

The raiders went the extra mile after the seizure of the temple and began to threaten the priest with the kidnapping of his son. The dean told the UOJ that the invaders, together with the so-called hierarch of the OCU Varsonofy, are planning to seize another three temples in his district.

“Our deanery is located on the border of Transcarpathia with Ivano-Frankovsk region, that’s why here these people can fulfill their tasks in seizing the temples,” Father Vitaly explained.

In other areas of Transcarpathia, attacks by raiders on the property of the UOC churches can be repelled. The invaders say that 70 people – participants in the meetings and supposedly members of the parish – voted for the transition of the UOC community to a new church structure. However, in fact, there were far fewer people at the meeting. Activist Vladimir Girya on Facebook announced the transition of the community to the UOC KP (not to the OCU) on the morning of February 3, despite the fact that the meeting began only a couple of hours later.

Followers of the Kiev Patriarchate brought extras with them and fixed as voters those who were only registered but did not live in the village. Some residents who supported the seizure of the temple did not appear in the locality for several years. One of the most ardent activists was generally a Catholic who came to "throw out the Moscow priest."

“It’s not even a matter of seizing the temple but of sowing discord, threatening people with dismissals, burning houses, seizing their business,” Father Vitaliy says. Despite the fact that the transitions to the OCU are positioned in the media as “peaceful and friendly,” the community continues to oppose both terror and capture. 15 people remained with their priest.

However, the media are silent that in this case it’s not about the whole “Yasinia village”, but only about its small sector, actually one street, while the local temple was always visited by 15-20 people. They actually constitute the UOC community.

“We experienced real stress on this day inasmuch as the entire local community. However, people do not surrender, they will continue to serve in one of the houses,” said the dean. According to him, the raider seizure of the temple was initiated by just a few people. This is the former chairman of the village council, Dmitry Poliak, the representative of the deputy corps of Rakhov Regional Council, Vasily Verbitsky, the civil servant of Rakhov Regional State Administration, Andrei Deliatynchuk, as well as the activists involved in nationalist groups.

Earlier, Archbishop Clement of Nezhin and Priluki reported on threats of physical violence. The UOJ also wrote that in the village of Olenovka, S14 nationalists cut off  locks and seized the UOC temple.

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