DECR comments on Dumenko's appeal to Kyiv-Pechersk Lavra monks
With the help of the monks of the UOC, Dumenko wants to enter the Lavra and take advantage of their labors, appropriating them to his structure, the DECR said.
The Department for External Church Relations of the UOC commented on the appeal of the head of the OCU, Epifaniy Dumenko, to the brethren of the Kyiv-Pechersk Lavra to move to the OCU, which he made on March 18, 2023, reports vzcz.church.ua.
The DECR noted the wickedness of Dumenko’s appeal and recalled that the monks of the Kyiv-Pechersk Lavra gave a response to similar statements by Epifaniy on January 27, 2023, where they said that “we were, are and will be in Truth and faithful to our canonical Church and its Primate – His Beatitude Metropolitan Onuphry" and will not transfer to the OCU.
“The manipulation and hypocrisy of this appeal lies in the fact that, on the one hand, the author declares the need to expel the ‘Moscow Patriarchate’ from the Lavra, to which he obviously attributes the Lavra’s brethren, but if the OCU receives the Lavra, then the monks who, according to the head of the OCU, were ‘Moscow’, will turn into ‘Ukrainian’ and will be able to stay there on. In the appeal, Dumenko also declares his readiness to even allow the monks to pray in the ‘ancient Church Slavonic language’ to encourage them to stay in the Lavra, because everyone knows that the OCU has a handful of monks compared with the UOC. In fact, the head of the OCU wants to enter the Lavra on the shoulders of the brethren of the UOC monastery and take advantage of their many years of work, appropriating them to his structure.”
The DECR said that “monks who are citizens of Ukraine live in the Lavra. Ukrainians live in the Lavra, Ukrainian monasticism, not Russian, as our media often falsely highlight it. There were and there are no authorities of the Moscow Patriarchate in the Lavra” and added that all church and public documents say that “it is the UOC that performs divine services in the Lavra today.”
"Not a single official church and public document contains the words ‘Moscow Church’ or ‘Moscow Patriarchate’. This is an artificially created cliché in the media, which is designed to divide Ukrainians and, unfortunately, does it successfully. The Ukrainian clergy, not Russian, performs its ministry in the Lavra,” the statement said.
Recall that the head of the OCU, Serhiy (Epifaniy) Dumenko, called on the brethren of the Kyiv-Pechersk Lavra to stop serving the Moscow yoke and join its structure.