Primate of UOC speaks about his attitude to altered Hagia Sophia’s status

Primate of the UOC, His Beatitude Metropolitan Onuphry. Photo: news.church.ua

A Christian church should belong to those who built it, according to the Primate of the UOC, His Beatitude Metropolitan Onuphry.

The Primate of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church, His Beatitude Metropolitan Onuphry of Kyiv and All Ukraine, said that he has a negative attitude to the conversion of Istanbul’s Hagia Sophia into a mosque.

“This is a Christian church, and it should belong to those who built it,” said the Primate of the UOC, answering a question from journalists of the Pavlovsky News project. "But Turkey is a different state, it has different laws, different rules."

He added that the Church is praying for the return of Hagia Sophia.

“We do not seize mosques and expect no one to seize our temples either," His Beatitude Metropolitan Onuphry summed up.

As a reminder, on July 10, 2020, the Turkish State Council cancelled the government decree granting the status of a museum to Hagia Sophia. Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan signed a decree on the resumption of Muslim worship in Hagia Sophia and on July 24, the first Friday prayer in 86 years was held in the Cathedral.

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