Epiphany: We no longer have the Kiev Patriarchate
The demand for dissolution of the UOC KP and the UAOC was voiced by Constantinople even before the “unification council” of December 15, 2018.
“Before the Council there was a certain condition on the part of Constantinople that the structures being united, i.e. the UOC KP and the UAOC, should take a conciliar decision that they dissolve as structures and accede to the unification council,” Dumenko explained. “And in the morning (December 15, 2018 – Ed.), when we arrived at the Cathedral in St. Sophia of Kiev, a condition arose that representatives of the Ecumenical Patriarch would not begin the Unification Council until the decision had been signed to dissolve the Kiev Patriarchate.”
At the same time, he stressed that the former leader of the UOC KP, Filaret Denisenko, “does not retire but remains in charge of the diocese of the Kiev city and of the parishes he supervised before the unification council.”
“It means he will continue to act, work, serve, and perform the liturgy in his cathedral. He is full of vigour,” Epiphany noted, adding that “none of the Kiev metropolitans throughout the history of the existence of the Ukrainian Church has held the position for so many years.”
According to the OCU “Primate”, the process of liquidation of the Kiev Patriarchate as a legal entity is still pending, since some legal issues have been rather protracted.
Epiphany specified that now the statutes of the UOC KP and the UAOC have already been deregistered, while the Kiev Metropolis of the Orthodox Church, which he calls the Ukrainian Orthodox Church, and the statute, adopted on December 15 at the “Unification Council”, are registered.
“In general, there are no such associations as the Kiev Patriarchate and the UAOC. Perhaps, there are still formal legal entities, the liquidation of which requires a certain period of time. This is due to the property for it cannot be deregistered very quickly. It takes six months, or more – up to a year. It is necessary to formalize everything correctly so that a new, already unified structure, had all the property. It is necessary to create a liquidation commission, re-register all objects. Now we will re-register the monasteries, parishes” explained Dumenko.
As the UOJ reported, earlier the OCU head said that in fact, he was managing the new structure “independently” and didn’t feel any counteraction from Filaret.