UOC Chancellor: UOC facing two challenges: media fibs and arson attacks
Metropolitan Anthony said the Church is keeping in touch with law enforcement agencies regarding the investigation of arsons.
On April 27, 2020, the UOC Chancellor, Metropolitan Anthony (Pakanich) of Boryspil and Brovary, spoke on the 112 Ukraine television channel about the challenges the Church is facing today. However, he reminded the believers that, in the first line, the Lord gave us faith in the Providence of God by His Resurrection.
“Regardless of all the difficulties we may have in our lives, of all those often daunting predictions, we are all in the hands of God. God always speaks to us with His immense Love. He resurrected human nature, and therefore <> we believe that the Providence of God even turns evil into good,” said the hierarch.
According to him, the first challenge is open discrimination of the UOC by certain media. For the past 6 years, the UOC has had to “live under the pressure of false narratives” from media that incite religious hatred. This is very dangerous and not only affects the media-trusting audience but also hurts the feelings of believers, Vladyka Anthony explained.
“Channel 5 and 1+1 TV channels alongside some speakers are top defamers in this direction,” said Met. Anthony.
He recalled that given such disrespect for the feelings and rights of believing Ukrainians, the Legal Department of the Church developed sample documents by means of which the UOC parishioners will now be able to protect their rights.
Metropolitan Anthony also thanked for the support of all those concerned, including the politicians who “try to forward everything related to religious life into the mainstream of the law in force.”
He also mentioned the deputies from Shariy Party and the Opposition Bloc – For Life faction, who appealed to the Prosecutor General of Ukraine with a demand to bring to justice director general of the first Crimean Tatar ATR television channel A. Muzhdabaev for inciting religious hatred.
“All this is very important, because we must live in a democratic state not only nominally. We must feel responsibility and security before ourselves,” Vladyka Anthony emphasized.
He drew public attention to the second challenge facing the UOC – the intimidation of the Church in the form of threats and arsons.
“We are now in close contact with the head of the National Police of Ukraine Igor Klimenko and obviously, they have started working on the offences,” the hierarch said.
He said that today he had spoken on the phone several times with the Head of the National Police, including about the arson of the church in the Chernivtsi region, where the culprit was found. Metropolitan Anthony expressed the hope that the police will give an assessment to the versions, put forward in different circles, on this occasion.
Earlier, he recalled that those waging war with the Church bite the hand that feeds them because they "deprive themselves of the opportunity to be humans and lose their connection with the Source of Life.”