Constantinople, April 20, 2018
The Deputy Head of the Presidential Administration of Ukraine Rostislav Pavlenko has arrived in Turkey to personally hand President Petro Poroshenko’s appeal for a single, autocephalous Church in Ukraine to His All-Holiness Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew, just one day after the Ukrainian parliament voted to support the initiative, reports Interfax-Religion.
“Pavlenko is now in Istanbul. I won’t lose a day; we are delivering [our appeal—O.C.],” President Poroshenko told journalists during a working trip to Lvov today.
Speaking of the prospects for receiving a tomos of autocephaly for a Local Ukrainian Church from the Ecumenical Patriarch, the head of state reflected, “Anything can happen, but I am absolutely convinced that everything is up to the will of God.”
Moreover, he stated that he hopes the fact that his appeal was signed by all the hierarchs of Ukraine’s two schismatic churches will give him the right to establish a single Local Church and realize the goal of being separate from the Moscow Patriarchate.
“I said yesterday that this is not the first time I have written such a letter, but this time, I wrote to get an answer,” Poroshenko said happily. “I think they didn’t even expect us to act so quickly.”
Meanwhile, Ukrainian deputies of the “Opposition Bloc” have sent their own message to the patriarch, entreating him not to support the Ukrainian president’s and parliament’s interference in the ecclesiastical life of the nation, but to offer his prayers and blessing for peace in the war-torn nation.
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