Historian: Church of Jerusalem has always patronized Ukrainian Orthodoxy

Patriarch Theophilos III of Jerusalem. Photo: “Vesti”

Church historian Sergey Shumilo spoke about many cases of assistance from the Jerusalem Patriarchate to the Orthodox hierarchy in Ukraine.

The Director of the International Athos Heritage Institute and the head of the Centre for the Study of the Heritage of the New Martyrs and Confessors of the 20th Century Sergey Shumilo believes that the fate of Ukraine and Ukrainian Orthodoxy has never been alien to the Jerusalem Patriarchate. He said this in an interview with the “Pravlife” portal.

The historian recalled that the Apostle Andrew the First-Called came to preach to the Ukrainian lands from Jerusalem, and the Jerusalem Patriarchate took spiritual care of the Crimean, Black Sea and Scythian lands from 310 to 451.

It was the Patriarchate of Jerusalem which restored the Orthodox hierarchy in Ukraine after most of the bishops in the Commonwealth accepted the Unia.

At the request of hetman P. Sagaidachny and Zaporozhye Cossacks, Patriarch Theophan III of Jerusalem, travelling in Ukraine in 1620, performed bishopric ordinations secretly from the Polish authorities, thereby restoring the Orthodox hierarchy in Ukraine and Belarus.

And in 1648, Bogdan Khmelnitsky liberated Kiev, it was the Jerusalem Patriarch Paisii who blessed the hetman and the whole Zaporozhye army to fight for national-religious liberation.

Discussing the right of Jerusalem to convene Pan-Orthodox Councils, Sergei Shumilo noted that the earliest Jerusalem Church repeatedly held Synaxes and Councils.

According to the historian, one of the most striking examples of the convening by the Jerusalem Patriarch of the Pan-Orthodox Synaxis was the Council of Primates of the Eastern Churches in Jerusalem in April 1443, at which the Orthodox hierarchy condemned the Ferrara-Florentine Union of the Patriarchate of Constantinople with Rome.

“There were a lot of such Councils in the Jerusalem Church, it could be the topic for a dissertation,” said Shumilo.

As reported earlier, the Council of Primates in Jordan dedicated to the "Ukrainian issue", as well as several other pressing problems of world Orthodoxy, will be held at the initiative of Patriarch Theophilos of Jerusalem.

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