Kuraev: Epiphany and Filaret have no monks to populate UOC Lavras

Holy Dormition Kyiv-Pechersk Lavra. Photo: Unian

Protodeacon Andrey Kuraev suggested that the OCU should not “fight for stones and for the past” and leave the Ukrainian Lavras to “dinosaurs”.

Neither Epiphany nor Filaret has so many monks to populate the Lavra belonging to the Ukrainian Orthodox Church. The clergyman of the Russian Orthodox Church, Andrey Kuraev, who is banned from priesthood, said this in an interview with Glavcom.

Asked what the supporters of the OCU should do in relation to the three Ukrainian Lavras, which are "controlled by the Moscow Patriarchate" and "this is not fair", Kuraev suggested "not to touch what is well-established."

“It's not just architecture – these are people. And it’s quite clear that neither Epiphany nor Filaret has so many monks to inhabit these huge complexes. Well, why destroy what works, though by fits and starts,” he said.

According to Kuraev, "to the honor of Ukraine, the conflicts over the churches are conflicts at the rural level, rather than the implementation of state policy."

“Well, the Lavras are extraterritorial. <...> Anyway, why fight for stones and for the past? Create something new! I don’t mean new monasteries, but a new icon of your faith. Why should a bachelor community be the main symbol of the Christian faith? ‘By this everyone will know that you are My disciples,’ said Christ. And what did He call the identifying feature? Being unmarried? Wearing black robes and bearing strange names? No, it was clearly said – 'if you love one another.' So let Epiphany try to create an icon of love and care, mercy and service out of his church,” advised Kuraev.

As for the Lavras of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church, then, he continued, "let they be resided by dinosaurs like Metropolitan Paul."

“Let the dead bury their dead. Don't fight them. Instead, create communities where there are no beggars and forgotten people. Let your vestments be shabby, but your hearts golden. Why fight for the attributes of a thousand years ago? Create a new agenda,” summed up the protodeacon of the Russian Orthodox Church, banned from priesthood.

We will remind, earlier the head of the OCU Epiphany Dumenko said that his structure would seek to transfer the Pochayiv and Kyiv-Pechersk Lavras to its disposal.

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