OCU: Filaret violates Apostolic Canon 34

"Patriarch of Kiev and All Rus-Ukraine" Filaret Denisenko. Photo: Filaret's Facebook Page

Although Filaret has the title of “Honorary Patriarch”, he is only the eparchial bishop and his canonical authority is determined by this, the OCU press service says.

The head of the UOC KP Filaret Denisenko violates Apostolic Canon 34, according to which he is obliged to coordinate all his actions with the head of the OCU Epiphany Dumenko, reads "The Statement of the Press Service of the Kiev Metropolis of the Orthodox Church of Ukraine regarding the meeting held at the St. Vladimir Cathedral of Kiev".

“The primate of each Local Church is precisely that “first bishop”, without the will and consent of whom church-wide affairs cannot be decided. The Honorable Patriarch Filaret has repeatedly, consciously and publicly, orally and in writing, recognized Metropolitan of Kiev and All Ukraine Epiphany as the Primate of the Local Ukrainian Orthodox Church, and therefore, thus that very "first bishop" among the Orthodox bishops of the Ukrainian people,” explained the press service.

It is noted that the activity not agreed with Epiphany exceeds the rights of the eparchial bishop, who, in the eyes of the OCU, is actually “Patriarch” Filaret.

He as one of the permanent members of the “Holy Synod” of the PCU took part in three meetings of this “Synod”, which means “formally showed his recognition of the force of the Statute of the OCU”, on the basis of which the Synod was convened, as noted in the new church structure. And they recalled the resolution signed by Filaret that he continues to supervise Kiev parishes and monasteries in his submission "as Patriarch of Kiev and all of Rus-Ukraine", which, from December 15, 2018, "have become an integral part of the religious association of the Orthodox Church of Ukraine".

“So, although His Holiness Filaret has the title of Honorary Patriarch, he is the eparchial bishop of the Orthodox Church of Ukraine in terms of the letter and spirit of the canons, the Statute of the OCU and the synodal decision, and his canonical authority and jurisdiction is determined by this fact,” concluded the press service of the "Kiev Metropolis" of the OCU.

Earlier, Filaret himself said that Epiphany became the “primate” of the new church structure only thanks to the efforts of the “Patriarch of Kiev and All Rus-Ukraine”, and now he wants to destroy him as a patriarch. “Everyone knows that if I hadn’t insisted, Metropolitan Epiphany would not have been the primate. And he knows that. And the bishops of Constantinople know that. Because they wanted to leave (the Council – Ed.). But only the President detained them and did not release them from the Boryspil airport. And they were about to go. And therefore, thanks to the President, they stayed, and thanks to my efforts, they elected Metropolitan Epiphany as primate,” said the head of the UOC KP.

On May 23, 2019, the Patriarchate of Constantinople in an official press release about the meeting of the "Patriarch of Kiev and All Rus-Ukraine" with the former Phanar exarch, Metropolitan Emmanuel of France, called Filaret "the former Metropolitan of Kiev".

At the same time, OCU “Archbishop” Eustratiy Zoria stated that within the framework of the recently created religious organization “Patriarch” Filaret would no longer have any powers, although he would not be punished. Zoria also said that the new structure which broke from the OCU is not the Kiev Patriarchate any more.

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