Vinnytsia, Ukraine, November 16, 2018
An emergency meeting of the clergy of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the city of Vinnytsia was held yesterday with the participation of the Vinnytsia Diocese’s abbot and two abbesses.
According to the Ukrainian portal strana.ua, the participants in the meeting expressed their full support for the decisions of the Council of Bishops of the Ukrainian Church on November 13, when they reaffirmed the Russian Church’s decision to break communion with Constantinople and also called for the repentance of the two Ukrainian schismatic groups.
The emergency clergy meeting was called because the ruling hierarch of the Vinnytsia Diocese, His Eminence Metropolitan Simeon (Shostatsky), an open supporter of Constantinople’s plans to create an autocephalous church, was the sole hierarch present on November 13 who did not sign the resolutions of the Council of Bishops. He is known to be very close with Ukrainian President Poroshenko and later that same day was one of the three hierarchs who met with the president at the Ukrainian House.
“We support the current status of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church,” the Vinnytsia clergy’s statement reads. “The assembly condemns the gross anti-canonical interference of the Patriarchate of Constantinople in the life of our Church and declares it support for the primate of our Church, His Beatitude Metropolitan Onuphry.”
Addressing their hierarch, Met. Simeon, the priests suggested that he convene a general meeting for the entire diocese on November 19 in order to “support the decisions of the Council of Bishops by a diocesan-wide vote and to demonstrate all-Church unity before the future trials.”
The statement was signed by 42 of the 44 present. The meeting was called and came together in the span of only a few hours, and others who could not come expressed their support by phone.
Several participants in the meeting even told strana.ua that they intend to cease commemorating Met. Simeon in the services.
The same support for the canonical Church and Met. Onuphry has also been expressed by the Dioceses of Chernigov and Novgorod-Siversk, Kirovograd, Zhytomyr, Lugansk, Mukachevo, Alexandria, Zaporozhye, Kharkov, Voznesensk, Tulchin, Rivne, Kherson, Severodonetsk, Odessa, Dnipropetrovsk, Krivoy Rog, Kamenka, Zaporozhye, and Poltava.
Follow us on Facebook!