Church in Donbass struck by military shelling

Kominternovo, July 8, 2019


On the night of July 5-6, an incendiary projectile hit the roof of the Church of Saint Spiridon in the village of Kominternovo, in the embattled region of Donbass, Eastern Ukraine.

Locals rushed to save the church from the fire, and to carry holy items out of the partially flame-engulfed structure, even though at that time, the shelling intensified. By the grace of God, the main part of the church did not suffer, only the utility room and roof ceilings burned down completely, reports the Orthodox Life portal, citing the website of the Donetsk Diocese.

A few days earlier, the area was also subjected to fierce shelling. This is just another example of the assaults to which Orthodox churches are subject throughout all Ukraine.

The Orthodox people of Donbass once again appeal to all parties involved in the war-torn region, demanding an end to the fratricidal hostilities.

While the Ukrainian Orthodox Church takes a non-political position, also calling upon all sides to immediately and without reservations halt hostilities and make peace, many schismatic communities actively glorify the war in Donbass. False Patriarch Philaret (in)famously blessed a massive so-called “icon” with Nazi symbolism that also contained images of Donetsk Airport on fire. He is known for awarding fighters who participate in combat operations in Donbass for their military service. Despite being himself native to Donbass, Philaret has before attempted to explain why in his view, the people of Donbass deserve to suffer, as “sinned” when they “voted for federalization” (see this video).

Philaret has never clarified how he reconciles these views with both the “Western democratic values” to which Ukrainian authorities claim to aspire, or with Orthodox canon law, in which there is no such sin as “federalization”.

Matfey Shaheen


to our mailing list

* indicates required