Bishop Pimen: None of 300 clerics of Rivne Eparchy has become a dissenter
Orthodox Christians in Ukraine need the current difficult time in order to purify themselves from the worthless, said the vicar of the Rivne Diocese.
On March 8, 2020, on the day of the Triumph of Orthodoxy, a religious procession took place in Rivne, after which Bishop Pimen of Dubno reminded the believers that a year ago the UOC communities in the Rivne Region were persecuted by the authorities and schismatics, but not a single priest of the diocese fell into schism.
Bishop Pimen noted that today the celebration of the Triumph of Orthodoxy as a day of victory over all heresies is particularly relevant in Ukraine, "where they want to create truth out of untruth, where they want to make black pass off as white, where they want to defame our Holy Church."
He noted that today Orthodox Christians have testified with the love of their hearts that they will not allow their shrines to be desecrated.
According to the hierarch, the past year was difficult: raider seizures of the UOC temples were misrepresented as voluntary transitions. But today they pray in churches for those who have sided with the untruth that the Lord will return them to the Orthodox faith.
The current difficult time is necessary for us, the bishop emphasized and cited the words of St. Nicholas of Serbia: “A heavy storm at sea is similar to a heavy storm in the soul. But without a storm, neither the sea nor the soul can be purified, because the storm must throw all that is worthless and useless onto the shore.” Likewise, the soul in these temptations, steadfastly choosing the truth, gets purified.
Vladyka pointed out that not a single priest of the diocese had fallen into schism, and this reaffirms the truth of the Lord. Temporary temples have already been built in some villages, permanent temples have been built in some villages to replace those seized by schismatics.
But the Triumph of Orthodoxy is not about the number of believers, although there are quite a lot of them. This Feast lies in our invincible love, with the help of which we have been able to defeat everything that the world in evil showed to us.
“We must withstand and we will withstand, because our faith is Orthodox and our Lord in the Trinity is indivisible Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit,” said Bishop Pimen.
As reported by the UOJ, on the day of the Triumph of Orthodoxy, Metropolitan Luke of Zaporizhia and Melitopol said he would be the first to say “Christ is in the midst of us” to the repentant schismatics.