Rivne Eparchy: Sealed church in Pereniatyn given to the OCU by authorities

The Holy Trinity Church in the village of Pereniatyn, Rivne region. Photo: decerkva.org.ua

The authorities have given the keys to the Holy Trinity Church in the village of Pereniatyn, which belongs to the UOC, to representatives of the OCU.

On 10 May 2022, supporters of the Orthodox Church of Ukraine held their first service at the Holy Trinity Church in the village of Pereniatyn, Rivne region, which according to documents belongs to the UOC religious community, reports the official website of the Rivne Eparchy.

The keys to the church, which was sealed off because of an interfaith dispute on April 28, 2022, were handed to the schismatics by the head of the Dubno Military Administration, Vsevolod Pekarsky.

Archpriest Viktor Zemliany, head of the Department for Interfaith Settlement at the Rivne Eparchy, noted that such examples of seizure are a recreation of the raiding scheme of Poroshenko's time, when the village convenes a meeting not of the religious community but of the village. This is a violation of Ukrainian law, because only the religious community, the parishioners of the temple, can decide on changing the confessional affiliation.

"It is on the basis of this meeting (of the village community - Ed.) that RMA officials allowed the re-registration of the religious community, without taking into account the appeal from the existing UOC religious community with signatures that they did not take part in the meeting", said Father Viktor.

Residents of other settlements also took part in voting at the village meeting for the transfer to the OCU, and the minutes of the meeting were signed by minors.

UOC believers, anticipating such a development, as early as last Sunday moved to a small chapel to pray.

"I hope after the people from the OCU toke over the church, they will stop attacking the UOC believers and we will be able to pray, because the right to free worship is provided by the Constitution of Ukraine. I urge all branches of power to provide us with this right," said priest Alexander Gnes, rector of Holy Trinity Church in the village of Pereniatyn. 

Father Alexander himself was forced to remove his family from the village because of the aggression.

We remind you that the invaders threatened to cut the priest into pieces and send him to Russia in a suitcase.

As earlier reported, UOC believers of Pereniatyn were not going to defect to the schismatics.

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