Expert: Where does Phanar head intend to serve in Kyiv?

The Holy Dormition Kyiv-Pechersk Lavra. Photo:

The church programme of Patriarch Bartholomew in Kyiv, whose visit is organized by the Ukrainian authorities, will be very modest, Yuri Reshetnikov assumes.

St. Andrew's Church and St. Michael's Cathedral in Kyiv are the whole possible church programme for Patriarch Bartholomew of Constantinople, said Yuri Reshetnikov, a religious expert, a specialist in the field of state-church relations, on “Klymenko Time”, commenting on the announced visit of the Phanar head to Ukraine.

The expert stressed that the visit of the head of the Patriarchate of Constantinople to Ukraine "is clearly made by the state, not the Church," and not even by its subsidiary OCU.

“He is not invited to some church event or a church feast – he is invited to a public holiday,” he notes. "And, in fact, the Patriarch's programme will, as I understand it, consist of some official, from the state point of view, events, not church ones."

Yuri Reshetnikov stated that Patriarch Bartholomew, for many reasons, is unlikely to be able to visit the main Orthodox shrine of Ukraine – the Kyiv-Pechersk Lavra or, for example, St. Vladimir’s Cathedral.

“I don’t know where he will serve. St. Andrew's Church – certainly, thanks to the grand gift of Petr Alekseevich (Poroshenko – Ed.), well, perhaps also St. Michael’s. That, in fact, is the whole church programme for the Patriarch,” resumed the expert.

As reported, Yuri Reshetnikov gave his assessment of the situation around the invitation to Patriarch Bartholomew to visit Ukraine from the point of view of international standards and the Constitution.

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