Dumenko: Preventing interfaith strife is an important task of OCU
Dumenko said that his structure, whose members have already seized more than 120 churches of the UOC, defends traditional moral and spiritual values.
On December 15, 2020, Epiphany Dumenko, during a speech at the "Bishops' Council" of the OCU, stated that preventing the incitement of sectarian enmity is an important task of the newly created religious organization.
The head of the OCU said that "preserving interfaith peace in Ukraine, preventing the incitement of enmity and confrontation on religious grounds is an important task for our Church, which, being the largest religious association, has a corresponding duty to society."
According to Dumenko, his religious structure “for almost 25 years has had a successful experience of cooperation between Christians, Muslims and Jews of Ukraine within the framework of the All-Ukrainian Council of Churches and Religious Organizations”, with which the OCU “defends traditional moral and spiritual values, protects freedom of religion” and “cares about a good direction of development” of the Ukrainian society.
As reported, on a Saturday morning, December 12, 2020, raiders from the OCU, led by the "priest" of this structure, staged another assault of the Holy Dormition Church of the UOC in Mikhalcha. Before the arrival of the police, OCU activists, armed with truncheons, bats and brass knuckles, tried to enter the temple through the forechurch but failed to get inside the premises.
Since February 10, 2019, the religious community of the UOC in the village of Mikhalcha has been standing in prayer for peace in Bukovina and the right to freely confess the Orthodox faith. The community was illegally re-registered into the OCU against its will, and since then the supporters of the newly formed structure has made regular raider attacks on the Holy Dormition Church. During a previous takeover attempt, activists knocked out the doors of the temple with a homemade ram. On December 23, 2019, the village council of Mikhalcha backed the transfer of the land under the temple of the UOC to the OCU.