DECR ROC: Patriarch Bartholomew made a big mistake but cannot own up to it

Chairman of the Department for External Church Relations of the Russian Orthodox Church, Metropolitan Hilarion (Alfeyev) of Volokolamsk. Photo:

The head of the DECR ROC commented on the invitation of Patriarch Bartholomew and Pope Francis to Ukraine and assessed the actions of the head of Phanar.

The Chairman of the Department for External Church Relations of the Russian Orthodox Church, Metropolitan Hilarion (Alfeyev) of Volokolamsk, commented on the invitation to Ukraine of Patriarch Bartholomew and Pope Francis in the Church and Peace program, reports.

According to the archpastor, the head of Phanar is likely to accept the invitation of the Ukrainian authorities while the Pope isn't.

“Patriarch Bartholomew is a man who hovers in the clouds of his illusions, ambitions, emotions; a man who has apparently lost touch with reality, since he passes off his fantasies as reality,” said Metropolitan Hilarion. “For example, he turns a blind eye to the fact that Ukraine has a multimillion-strong Ukrainian Orthodox Church, which has 12 and a half thousand parishes, more than 100 bishops, over 250 monasteries and millions of believers. He claims that this Church does not seem to exist, but there is some other "church", which he patched together from the two schismatic groups."

The head of the DECR believes that the Patriarch of Constantinople plans to come to Ukraine once again to show that the Ukrainian Church is the so-called autocephalous church he created. “But reality testifies to the opposite,” the hierarch emphasized.

Metropolitan Hilarion added that the head of Phanar "made a big mistake that he does not want to admit": "He will take various actions to convince the world that it was not his mistake, that everyone around him was wrong."

Commenting on the invitation of Pope Francis to Ukraine, the archpastor stressed that the head of the Vatican would not agree to this, realizing that he would inevitably be drawn into some form of recognition of the schismatics.

Earlier, the political expert Mikhail Pogrebinsky presumed that Patriarch Bartholomew might not come to Ukraine if the precarious political situation inside the country aggravates.

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