Eastern-American Diocese requests Trump to defend the UOC
The clergy of the Eastern American Diocese of the ROCOR adopted the text of an appeal to President Trump asking him to protect the canonical UOC at a diplomatic level.
During the Lenten meeting of the Eastern American Diocese of the ROCOR, priests listened to speeches by clerics who had moved out of the Patriarchate of Constantinople in protest against the non-canonical actions of the Ecumenical Patriarchate in Ukraine, the diocese website reports.
The meeting adopted the text of a letter to President Donald Trump asking the US government at the diplomatic level to protect the canonical Ukrainian Orthodox Church, which is currently being persecuted by the Ukrainian government and the government-supported paramilitary groups.
Also, the priesthood of more than a hundred parishes, monasteries and missionary communities of the Eastern American Diocese of the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia in the Resolution of the Lenten Retreat of the Clergy emphasized that "one of the main concerns of our hearts is the grave situation of our fraternal Ukrainian Orthodox Church led by His Beatitude Metropolitan Onufry, which is suffering persecution at the hands of the government and nationalist forces. We grieve for the archpastors, our our brother-pastors, monastics and laity, recognized as the canonical Church throughout the Orthodox world. We extend a helping hand to Her, lift up our fervent prayers for Her and call upon politicians in the Ukrainian government to cease this lawlessness, and upon governmental institutions in the U.S. and international human rights and religious freedom organizations to examine the situation of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church without prejudice, and to influence the situation in a positive direction.”
The priests Marc Tyson (rector of the community of St. Prophet Elijah, Pigeon Forge city. Tennessee state) and Nektary Trevino (rector of the community of Saint Infants and Equal-to-the-Apostles Nina of Bristov city, Virginia state) turned to their brothers in Christ. Both priests were clerics of the Karpatoros Diocese in America under the jurisdiction of the Constantinople Patriarchate, and in 2018 they left this jurisdiction in protest against the non-canonical actions of the Ecumenical Patriarchate in Ukraine. They told about their experience and expressed their admiration for the warm and brotherly reception they encountered at the Russian Church Outside of Russia. After their comments, Metropolitan Jonah also spoke, presenting the timeline of recent events and stressing the impossibility of any co-services with the Ecumenical Patriarchate, which had entered into Eucharistic communion with Ukrainian schismatics.
Lenten Retreat of the clergy of the Eastern American Diocese took place in St. Alexander Nevsky Cathedral in Howell, New Jersey.
As the UOJ reported, earlier the Chicago and Middle-American Diocese of the ROCOR spoke out in condemnation of the persecution of the UOC and supported His Beatitude Metropolitan Onufriy with his flock. The priests of the ROCOR jointly expressed their concern about the church conflict in Ukraine, condemned the persecution of the clergy and believers of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church and assured their prayer support for His Beatitude Metropolitan Onufry of Kiev and All Ukraine and his flock in difficult times for the Church.