Filaret: There should be one Church in Ukraine for OCU not to seize temples

Head of the UOC-KP Filaret Denisenko. Photo: a video screenshot of the “112 Ukraine” channel on YouTube

The "Primate" of the Kyiv Patriarchate explained why the schismatic structure of Epiphany Dumenko seizes churches of the UOC and how to avoid it.

The seizures of the temples of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church occur because there are “several Orthodox Churches” in Ukraine, said the head of the UOC-KP Filaret Denisenko on the “112 Ukraine” channel,, answering the question of the TV viewer Olga from the Rivne region about how the actions of church raiders from the OCU created with his participation can be correlated with the Gospel Commandment love of love.

"I understand. It is about the seizure of temples. And this, unfortunately, takes place in Ukraine. Why does it happen? Because there are several Orthodox Churches in Ukraine <...>. And each of them wants to have more temples and more believers to be dominant,” said the head of the Kyiv Patriarchate. “But in Ukraine, there should be one Orthodox Church – independent. Independent of either Moscow or Constantinople.”

Filaret once again repeated his statements that the only independent church structure in Ukraine is the Kyiv Patriarchate.

“So, our Church, the UOC-KP, which I head ... I have always stood on the position: violence in matters of faith is unacceptable because the Lord does not even call into the Kingdom of Heaven by force, but a person must freely choose," said the head of the Kyiv Patriarchate.

According to him, the religious communities of the UOC “shift” to the OCU or UOC-KP due to the allegedly inappropriate attitude of the clergy of the canonical Church towards Ukrainian soldiers.

In the spring of 2019, during an attempt to seize the Church the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary in Baranivka, Zhytomyr region, OCU activists insulted and beat the mother of the deceased ATO hero, a nun of the canonical Church, Dimitria (Pasevich).

Raider attacks by activists of Epiphany Dumenko’s church structure have continued to this day. On the night of January 2 to 3, 2020, adherents of the OCU brutally beat the believers of the UOC in the village of Mashcha, Rivne region.

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