UOC bishop says why believers demand to revoke an invitation to Phanar head
Believers of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church are opposed to the Patriarch of Constantinople’s arrival in Ukraine.
In addition to the abolition of anti-church laws, the believers of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church demand that President Vladimir Zelensky withdraw his invitation to Patriarch Bartholomew of Constantinople to celebrate the Independence Day of Ukraine. The vicar of the Kyiv Diocese, Archbishop Nikolai (Pochtovy) of Vasylkiv, said this at a prayer meeting of believers of the UOC near the Verkhovna Rada.
The hierarch voiced a question that worries millions of believers of the UOC: what awaits them after the arrival of the head of Phanar in Ukraine?
“Will it be the same as 6 years ago? A wave of temple seizures? Is this the father who brings peace to Ukraine? noted Archbishop Nikolai. “We demand that the President withdraw his invitation to Patriarch Bartholomew to visit Ukraine on Independence Day. This is our Independence Day. And we want to celebrate it all together in peace and quiet."
As reported by the UOJ, at a prayer action near the Verkhovna Rada, where bills against persecution of the Church were delivered on June 15, Archbishop Nikolai (Pochtovy) stressed that the believers of the UOC have been demanding for several years now that the authorities treat them in accordance with the Constitution of Ukraine.
Let us remind, according to the estimates of the representatives of the NGO “Miriane”, more than 20 thousand believers gathered for the prayer action near the Verkhovna Rada and the Office of the President.