Ukrainian Church won’t participate in council for unification of non-canonical churches

Kiev, October 12, 2018

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The Ukrainian Orthodox Church under the guidance of His Beatitude Metropolitan Onuphry of Kiev and All Ukraine will not participate in the council for the unification of churches being planned by the non-canonical churches in Ukraine.

Following the Ecumenical Patriarchate’s announcement yesterday that it was restoring the schismatic Kiev Patriarchate and Ukrainian Autocephalous Orthodox Church to communion with itself and continuing the process of granting autocephaly, the non-canonical churches called for the preparation of a unification council which will decide who will head the new church.

In a press release published today, the Kiev Patriarchate addressed the hierarchs of the Ukrainian Autocephalous Orthodox Church and any bishops of the canonical Church who desire to join the newly church with a call to begin preparations for a unification council, tasked with approving the decision for church unity and to elect a primate for the new church.

Philaret Denisenko, the head of the schismatic Kiev Patriarchate, has repeatedly voiced his desire to lead the new church, including at a press conference yesterday where he declared, “I was the patriarch, I am, and I will be!”

His Eminence Archbishop Clement (Vecherya), the Chairman of the Synodal Information and Education Department of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church, told RIA-Novosti that the Ukrainian Church will not participate in the council.

The head of the Ukrainian Church’s press service Vasily Anisimov likewise commented to Interfax-Religion: “We are already the canonical local Church. Why should we participate in creating yet another, and moreover, together with people who we forbade from serving for various infractions?!”

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