SOC Hierarch: US State Dept reps convince other Churches to recognize OCU
Bishop Irinej of Bačka believes that the Patriarchate of Alexandria and Greek Church recognized the false "Church of Ukraine" owing to the efforts of the US State Dept.
Bishop Irinej (Bulovic) of Bačka of the Serbian Orthodox Church stated that representatives of the US State Department are demanding that the Primates and hierarchs of the Local Orthodox Churches join the Patriarchate of Constantinople in recognizing the OCU.
He said this in an interview with the Serbian publication "Seal", the text of which is fully published on the website of the Bačka Diocese of the SOC.
In particular, according to His Grace, the problem of recognizing the OCU by Phanar can be defined at three levels. The first of them is “non-canonical actions of the Patriarchate of Constantinople in the canonical territory of the Moscow Patriarchate.”
The second level is “the problem of torn relations in World Orthodoxy as a whole.”
And, finally, the crisis caused by the “Ukrainian issue”, according to the Bishop, “seriously compromised the authenticity of the gospel testimony of the Church about Orthodoxy, both before non-Orthodox Christians and people of other faiths.”
At the same time, Bishop Irinej emphasized that “the main actors (of granting the Tomos to the OCU – Ed.) no longer feel the need to hide something: on an open stage, always with credentials and sometimes photographed, senior representatives of the US Administration visit Orthodox Primates and bishops, meet with the abbots of ancient monasteries and openly demand that they join the Patriarchate of Constantinople, in a clear violation of the dispensation and canonical order of the Orthodox Church.”
The Hierarch of the Serbian Church noted that "in this regard, at least for the time being, they have achieved some success: the Patriarchate of Alexandria and the Church of Greece recognized the false ‘Church of Ukraine’."
In addition, Vladyka believes, "unfortunately, it is possible that another Local Church will join them."
Earlier, the UOJ wrote that, according to the Head of the DECR of the Russian Orthodox Church, Metropolitan Hilarion (Alfeyev), the US State Administration put great pressure on the Primates of the local Orthodox Churches.