Christmas under siege for UOC community in Dilove

Priests and believers of the UOC remain on the temple grounds. Photo: a screenshot of the video from the "1Kozak" YouTube channel

The UOC believers, who have not left the territory of the Holy Dormition Church for three weeks, are actually under siege on Christmas Eve.

On January 6, 2021, in the village of Dilove of the Rakhiv district, Zakarpattia region, supporters of the OCU, with the assistance of the police, hung their locks on the gate of the Holy Dormition Church, blocking the entrance for believers of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church. Video footage from the scene was shown in the story by journalists of the "1Kozak" channel.

Proponents of the OCU planned to seize the church in Dilove from the community of the canonical Church immediately after receiving the Tomos. Having fraudulently seized the statute documents, with the assistance of local officials, the Holy Dormition Church was illegally re-registered in the OCU. Prolonged trials began, which were won by supporters of the Epiphany structure on the basis of falsified documents. UOC believers filed a cassation appeal and, pending a court decision, did not leave their church for several weeks.

"Today, according to participants, a tandem of officials and the OCU resorted to trickery: in the morning, Orthodox believers in the church found the locks hanging at the gate of the church grounds, and the church was surrounded by the police. On Christmas Eve, the community was literally under siege. The faithful can leave the temple, but they are not allowed back,” the authors of the story said on Wednesday, January 6.

Priests and faithful of the UOC remain in the temple area and perform prayers.

"We are sitting here as in prison," said one of the parishioners. “But even a lawyer is allowed in prison, and no one is allowed here. I don't know what they're thinking about. We ask our police, the authorities, maybe they will help with something."

Earlier, the OCU reported that locals claim for the Holy Dormition Church to belong to the Ukrainian Orthodox Church and consider the official "transfer" illegal. Re-registration of the UOC community in the village of Dilove was conducted with the help of government officials, who had illegally obtained the statute documents from the priest. The church remains at the disposal of the UOC community.

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