Two men beaten as they defend Ukrainian priest from violent eviction

Nova Moschanitsa, Ukraine, June 12, 2019

Photo: news.church.ua Photo: news.church.ua     

Supporters of the schismatic Ukrainian church tried to forcefully evict Archpriest Igor Gnatishin from church property in the village of Nova Moschanitsa in the Rivne Province on June 5, beating up two men who tried to defend the priest in the process, reports Archpriest Vasily Nachev.

According to the Ukrainian Church, the religious conflict in the village has been raging since the beginning of March when the Church of the Nativity of the Theotokos was forcefully seized by schismatic-nationalists and the canonical parish community was forced to arrange a prayer room in Fr. Vasily’s house.

Last Wednesday, three drunk activists came to the church house, demanding the eviction of Fr. Igor and his family. Matushka Natalia was forced to close herself up in the house and call the police.

“Taking advantage of the night, OCU supporters came to evict the priest… Again, shouts and fights… Fr. Igor called and said there was a fight. Two men who defended Batiushka were beaten on the ground with feet,” Fr. Vasily relays, adding that one of the victims needed medical assistance.

Photo: news.church.ua Photo: news.church.ua     

About 10 supporters of the OCU altogether gathered at the priest’s house after dark.

The hierarch of the OCU for Rivne, “Archbishop” Hilarion had visited Nova Moschanitsa earlier that same day. Thus, after meeting with their spiritual head, the activists went immediately out to deal with Fr. Igor.

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6/12/2019

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