Ukrainian intelligentsia urges Filaret to be unaffected by Kremlin
The Ukrainian intelligentsia asks Filaret to refrain from public discussions and to delegate the consideration of all sensitive issues to representative church bodies.
Representatives of the Ukrainian intelligentsia "out of considerations about the good of the Church and Ukraine" appealed to "patriarch" Filaret with a request not to make any public statements in the near future that "can cause alarm and uncertainty among the Orthodox people and please the enemies of the state." This is stated in the appeal to the "Honorary Patriarch Filaret of Kiev and all Ukraine-Rus", the text of which was published by Ukrinform.
“We deeply respect you as a spiritual guide not only to the Ukrainian Orthodox Church, but also to the Ukrainian nation, your contribution to the spiritual and material support of Ukrainian soldiers. That is why we would like the authority of the hierarchs of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church, including your undisputed authority, not to be questioned. Let those who try to forward you to the detriment of the unity of our church, incite confrontation within our church, exposing it to condemnation by the believers and Ukrainian citizenship, and thereby undermining the spiritual forces of our people, discrediting the life you have passed – let them depart from our holy common cause,” says the text of the appeal.
The signatories pointed out to Filaret that “the forces unfriendly to our Church and Ukraine seek to prevent the approval of the local status of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church (OCU – Ed.), to hinder the expansion of its influence in Ukraine and its recognition by other Orthodox Churches.”
The authors of the appeal stressed that “the experienced spiritual guide and church politician” Filaret is well aware of how “the Kremlin church leadership skillfully organizes propaganda campaigns necessary to preserve its imperial influence,” and therefore, asked the “patriarch” to refrain from public statements that could harm the OCU.
“We ask you, Your Holiness, for the sake of ensuring the unity of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church, preserving its authority within Ukraine and in the Orthodox world, to delegate the discussion of all critical issues to the representative church bodies defined thereto by the Statute of the Church. We draw your attention to the fact that the overwhelming majority of controversies, announced in the media as signs of a split (including the issue of obtaining the patriarchal status of our church, the formation of the composition of the Synod, and relations with the Constantinople and other Churches), are working questions. Their consistent decision is possible in a friendly discussion and dialogue. Public highlight and sensation-avid journalists cannot give any good fruit. It is for the sake of the good of the church and Ukraine that we ask you, Your Holiness, to refrain in the near future from any public deliberations or interviews that may bring about anxiety and uncertainty among the Orthodox people and please the enemies of Ukraine. We believe that your prayer and your wisdom of the spiritual guide will be an edifying directive to all of us for many years ahead,” the letter emphasizes.
Among the signatories are religious scholars Alexander Sagan, Anatoly Kolodny and Lyudmila Filipovich, rector of the Ostrog Academy National University Igor Pasechnik, participants in the Revival Council of the Autocephalous Church of Ukraine Alexander Tkachuk and Alexander Gudyma, honorary academician of the Academy of Arts of Ukraine Nikolay Zhulinsky, general director of the National Historical Museum of Ukraine Tatiana Sosnovskaya , Director General of the Museum of Folk Architecture and Life Oksana Poviakel, Director General of the National Museum of Literature Galina Soroka, People’s Artist of Ukraine Taras Kompanichenko, writers Dmitry Pavlychko, Pavel Movchan, political prisoners Bogdan Goryn, Oles Shevchenko, Vasily Ovsienko and others.
As the UOJ reported, at the meeting with the rectors of the Kiev churches, which took place at Filaret’s residence on Monday, June 3, the “honorary patriarch” announced his intentions to convene the “local council” of the UOC KP and asked not to re-register parishes of the UOC KP in favor of “this new Church, so called OCU”.