Ivankiv: community which lost church isn’t allowed to serve freely in house

Seizure of a UOC church in Ivankiv. Photo: Facebook Olena Pavlenko

The authorities claim that the UOC community, whose church was seized, can now hold services only with their consent by submitting a request at least 10 days in advance.

On 13 August 2022, the rector of the UOC community in Ivankiv received a letter from the local police stating that the congregation should hold services only with the permission of the local administration, reports parishioner Olena Pavlenko on her Facebook page.

"Public worship, religious rites, ceremonies, and processions are held each time with the permission of the relevant local state administration, the executive body of the village, town or city council. An application for the permit shall be submitted at least ten days before the scheduled date of the church service," the letter says. 

According to Pavlenko, this is how the police responded to a complaint by representatives of the OCU who were dissatisfied with the fact that the UOC community continues their services. 

"Worship services in the UOC are held! And the congregation is alive. The UOC community gathers in an old house to hold services, but the representatives of the political church of Ukraine (OCU – Ed.) are not satisfied with this! After all, their task is to destroy the Orthodox faith!" - commented Olena Pavlenko.

On May 21, 2022, raiders from the OCU seized the UOC church of the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary in the village of Ivankiv, Kyiv region, relying on illegal decisions to re-register with the support of the police and territorial defence members.

As earlier reported, the rector of the church in Ivankiv after it was transferred to the OCU was not letting the invaders in.

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