Zaporizhia (a city on the Dnieper river, southeastern Ukraine), January 2, 2016
At a press conference with the journalists of Zaporizhia, Archbishop Luka (Luke) of Zaporizhia and Melitopol expressed his opinion on the proposal by Secretary of the Ukraine's National Security and Defence Council Alexander Turchinov to move the celebration of the Nativity of Christ from January 7 to December 25, reports the Information Department of UOC MP with reference to the Reporter-ua.com website. January 7 is the civil date on which falls old calendar Christmas, December 25.
According to His Eminence, the celebration of the Birth of Christ on this date is an ancient tradition for Orthodox Christians and it would be meaningless to move the feast-day allegedly for European integration. It is an attempt to split the Ukrainian society.
“This statement has exploded the public. This is the tradition by which we live. If we move the festival, then we will lose our tradition and will not acquire a new one. The people are seeking to split our society. This idea is not from God. Our Church lives according to its own calendar, and we will continue to celebrate according to our own calendar. Again the society is being divided into “friends” and “aliens”, into “black” and “white”,” Archbishop Luka noted.
Last week, Archbishop Luka called upon the people’s deputy Irina Gerashchenko to refute the disinformation regarding the UOC MP.