Ivano-Frankivsk mayor decides to set up an "Interfaith Council of Churches"

Ivano-Frankivsk Mayor Ruslan Martsinkiv. Photo: Martsinkiv’s Facebook page

Ivano-Frankivsk Mayor Ruslan Martsinkiv announced his decision to establish a Council of Churches to resolve interfaith conflicts.

On June 30, 2022, Ruslan Martsinkiv, the Ivano-Frankivsk mayor, initiated the creation of the Council of Churches in the city, to which he invited representatives of all denominations, religious movements and associations. The Council will operate under the Mayor's Office, reports Martsinkiv on his Facebook page.

Stating that "unity is our strength," the mayor noted that "in everyday religious life, there are negative moments, controversial issues that require joint analysis, discussion and resolution. The Council of Churches is being set up to resolve them. Among other goals of the Council, the mayor named "avoidance of conflict situations and misunderstandings, elaboration of a single correct tactic in meeting the spiritual needs of all residents of the city, observance of their rights and freedoms, co-operation with the military in the field of chaplaincy ministry.

Martsinkiv noted that "the enemy may try to tip the scales in its favour by undermining the situation inside our state, using <...> even the religious factor. He reminded that although Ivano-Frankivsk is a multi-faith city, it "observes international standards of religious freedom and current Ukrainian legislation in terms of protection of rights and freedoms of believers of all religious preferences without exception”.

"The phone number for representatives of religious organisations (dioceses, parishes) is 0968549412," said Martsinkiv. A UOJ correspondent called this number but was told that it was a private number, which had nothing to do with the mentioned organization.

Roman Martsinkiv has long urged UOC believers to join the OCU. On June 25, 2022, he "transferred" the only UOC church in Ivano-Frankivsk – the Cathedral of the Nativity of Christ, whose community, however, rejected his words and confirmed their loyalty to the UOC.

As the UOJ wrote, the community of the Nativity Cathedral in Ivano-Frankivsk appealed to the police because of the "transfer" to the OCU.

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