Met. Onufriy on elections: The Church is tasked to unite all around Christ
The Church does not call on its believers to vote for a given candidate, said the UOC Primate at a meeting with representatives of the OSCE Election Observation Mission.
On March 19, 2019, His Beatitude Metropolitan Onufriy of Kiev and All Ukraine met with representatives of the OSCE Election Observation Mission at his residence in the Kiev-Pechersk Lavra, reported the press service of the Department for External Church Relations of the UOC.
The meeting was attended by the Head of Mission – Ambassador Peter Teiler, political analyst Yarek Domanski, deputy head of the Department for External Church Relations of the UOC Archpriest Nikolai Danilevich, and a member of the Department, priest Sergei Shulgach.
During the meeting, the guests were interested in the attitude of the Church to the elections and its role in the electoral process.
His Beatitude Metropolitan Onufriy said that the Church does not encourage its believers to vote for whatever candidate. Believers of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church have sympathy for different political forces. The task of the Church is to unite all around Christ. The Primate expressed his wish that any of the candidates to be elected to the office of President should, above all, take care of the people, the poor and disadvantaged.
The Mission observers also touched upon the violation of the rights of believers of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church. They were given materials describing the facts of pressure on the clergy and believers of the UOC, seizures of churches in different regions of Ukraine.
As reported, due to the large-scale violations of human rights and the threat of escalation of religious conflicts, the UOC called upon international institutions to influence the situation in Ukraine.