Jerusalem, April 11, 2018
At a recent meeting with a Ukrainian delegation in Jerusalem, His Beatitude Patriarch Theophilos III of the Holy City expressed his belief that His Beatitude Metropolitan Onuphry of Kiev is the only one who can cope with the difficult situation the Ukrainian people find themselves in now.
Pat. Theophilos has proven himself a true friend of the canonical Ukrainian Orthodox Church, frequently speaking out against Ukrainian schismatics and calling all Ukrainians to reunite in the true Church headed by Met. Onuphry.
“God chose His Beatitude Metropolitan Onuphry of Kiev and All Ukraine, the most suitable person for the difficult situation in which the Ukrainian people find themselves now, and he will have the strength to overcome the schism which has occurred in Ukraine,” the patriarch said, according to The Union of Orthodox Journalists.
The Ukrainian schism is something that worries not only Ukraine, but the whole of the Orthodox world, the patriarch affirmed.
The official delegation of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church, headed by His Eminence Metropolitan Anthony of Boryspil and Brovary, was in Jerusalem to participate in the Holy Fire ceremony and take the blessed flame back to Ukraine on April 7. They had an official audience with the patriarch the day before.
In a 2015 meeting with Ukrainian radical politicians, His Beatitude Theophilos spoke of the so-called “Kiev Patriarchate” as “our lost brothers headed by Philaret [who have fallen away] from the Mother-Church.” The patriarch again expressed his support for the suffering faithful of the canonical Orthodox Church in an October 2016 meeting with a delegation of the Ukrainian Church, and on Pentecost in 2017, Pat. Theophilos spoke of the Ukrainian schismatic nationalists who seize parishes of the true Church, saying, “We condemn in the most categorical terms those who are committing actions directed against the parishes of the canonical Orthodox Church in the Ukraine. Not in vain do the holy fathers remind us that the violation of the Church’s unity is the gravest sin.”