Metropolitan of Limassol confirms that he recognizes only UOC in Ukraine
Metropolitan Athanasios “separates his position in commemorating the name of Epiphany” and recognizes only His Beatitude Onuphry as head of the Church in Ukraine.
The commemoration of the name of the head of the OCU Epiphany, made by the Patriarch Theodore of Alexandria in Cyprus on November 12, 2019, does not express the opinion of Metropolitan Athanasios of Limassol (Nicolaou) and the Metropolis led by him, on whose territory this happened, says a statement published on the official website of the Limassol Metropolis.
“Metropolitan Athanasios of Limassol separates his position in mentioning the name of Epiphany as Metropolitan of Kiev, which was performed by Patriarch Theodore II of Alexandria during the Patriarchal Divine Liturgy in Limassol,” the statement emphasizes.
Met. Athanasios also commented on this situation on the metropolitan radio station.
In his speech, the hierarch emphasized that the bishops of the Patriarchate of Alexandria until the last moment assured him that Patriarch Theodore promised not to сommemorate Epiphany Dumenko. The patriarch himself also did not inform Vladyka Athanasios during the liturgy that he intended to make this commemoration.
Thus, Metropolitan Athanasios noted, this commemoration, though it took place in the temple of the Church of Cyprus, does not express either his personal opinion or the opinion of the Limassol Metropolis as a whole.
At the same time, he emphasized that "he accepts and recognizes only His Beatitude Onuphry as the canonical Metropolitan of Kiev and all Ukraine."
We recall that on November 12, 2019, at the patriarchal Divine Liturgy on the occasion of the 1400th anniversary of the assumption of St. John the Merciful, held in Cyprus, Patriarch Theodore II of Alexandria and All Africa commemorated the head of the OCU Metropolitan Epiphany. On the eve of the event, Metropolitan Athanasios of Limassol, whose metropolis hosted celebrations, asked the patriarch to refrain from remembering the head of the OCU.
As reported, following the commemoration of Epiphany by Patriarch Theodore in Cyprus, the clergy received letters, which depicted Patriarch Theodore with His Beatitude Onuphry and a fragment of the fresco "Kiss of Judas", as well as the text: "Onuphry – Metropolitan, Epiphany – schismatic, Theodore – Judah.”