UOC Chancellor: Orthodox prayer can sound again in Hagia Sophia
History forgives no mistakes, but we know: what is impossible with men is possible with God, noted Met. Anthony in light of conversion of Hagia Sophia into a mosque.
The UOC Chancellor, Metropolitan Anthony (Pakanich) of Boryspil and Brovary, commented on the conversion of Hagia Sophia in Istanbul into a mosque and consoled the faithful with the fact that sooner or later the Orthodox prayer could be heard there again.
“We believe and firmly know that “What is impossible with man is possible with God”(Luke 18: 27). No political, geopolitical, or other interests can oppose His will. The main thing is not to fall away from Him with one’s ambitions, lust for power, heresies and schisms, Metropolitan Anthony wrote on his Facebook page. “The Lord always accepts repentance and sincere prayer. Given this, I am sure that sooner or later, Orthodox worship can be resumed again in Hagia Sophia.”
The UOC Chancellor noted that history, which “tends to go in cycles” and “doesn’t forgive mistakes to those who forget its bitter lessons”, can help to understand the reasons for what had happened in Istanbul.
“A detailed study of the events, decisions and policies of a certain period of the deep past will provide every thinking person with the proper opportunity to come up with a picture of why the great Constantinople fell under the onslaught of the Turks. It will also help to build a bridge to understanding today's sad situation,” said Metropolitan Anthony.
He stressed that the UOC, which suffered but survived the seizure of temples and enormous pressure from the authorities, perfectly understands the bitterness of loss that shocked not only the Patriarchate of Constantinople today but the entire Orthodox world.
On July 10, 2020, the 10th chamber of the Turkish State Council announced that Hagia Sophia would become a mosque, on the same day for the first time since 1934, the imam called on Muslim believers to prayer from the minaret of this Cathedral.