UOC Chancellor: ecclesiastical issues must be considered only “in the peace of Christ and prayer”

Kiev, March 3, 2022

Photo: pravlife.org Photo: pravlife.org     

The Chancellor of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church, His Eminence Metropolitan Anthony of Boryspil and Brovary addressed the clergy of the Church yesterday, calling on them to focus on their pastoral ministry in these trying times, and not to act based on emotion.

As OrthoChristian reported yesterday, a growing number of hierarchs and dioceses have stopped commemorating His Holiness Patriarch Kirill in the Divine services in response to his statements about the invasion of Ukraine. Some dioceses have even called upon His Beatitude Metropolitan Onuphry of Kiev and All Ukraine to convene the Ukrainian Synod to being the process of requesting autocephaly for the Ukrainian Church.

Recalling how the Ukrainian Church has always defended itself against pressure to follow a non-canonical path, His Eminence states: “All ecclesiastical issues should be considered and resolved exclusively within the framework of the canons and the conciliar mind. And all this should be done not under the roar of explosions, but in the peace of Christ and prayer. Emotions aren’t the best adviser for solving any issues.”

His Eminence Metropolitan Luke of Zaporozhye made a similar call, as reported on yesterday.

Met. Anthony’s statement reads in full:

The Holy Fathers remind us that it’s not difficult to distinguish deeds pleasing to God from those that the enemy of the human race pushes us to.

If the fruits of our deeds are peace, love and unity, then they are pleasing to God. And if certain actions lead to enmity and confrontation, then they are from the devil.

The horror of war divides people into two camps. Some begin to look inside themselves and repent, and as a result find God, while others, on the contrary, become increasingly embittered and kindle anger and hatred in their soul, and thereby, unfortunately, move away from the Almighty.

I appeal to the clergy of our Church. Dear fathers, we stood up and defended our Church when they wanted to force it to follow a non-canonical path. We are all the canonical Church of Christ, the Church of Confessors and Martyrs, for which we are revered throughout the Orthodox world. We must make this choice in this difficult and terrible time. Do not give in to provocations! All ecclesiastical issues should be considered and resolved exclusively within the framework of the canons and the conciliar mind.

And all this should be done not under the roar of explosions, but in the peace of Christ and prayer. Emotions aren’t the best adviser for solving any issues.

We have something to be doing today. We must focus all our efforts and capabilities on our pastoral ministry and comprehensive assistance to all those who need it. And there are hundreds and thousands of them.

Let us remain faithful children of the Church of Christ—the Ukrainian Orthodox Church, loyal to our Primate—His Beatitude Metropolitan Onuphry.

God bless everyone!

Patriarch Kirill himself has also issued a resolution in response to His Eminence Metropolitan Evlogy of Sumy, who was perhaps the first bishop to publicly announce that his diocese was no longer commemorating Pat. Kirill and who has been collecting and publishing similar statements from other dioceses:

I regret your decision to stop commemorating the Patriarch of Moscow and All Russia at the Divine services. I would like to the offer the example of Archpriest Gregory Prokhorov, who never stopped commemorating the name of Metropolitan Sergius, celebrating the Divine services in the only church of the MP in Berlin during the war until 1942, i.e. until his arrest and death.

Ceasing to commemorate the primate of the Church, not because of doctrinal or canonical errors or aberrations, but because of a discrepancy with certain political views and preferences, is a schism, which everyone who commits it will answer for before God, and not only in the future age, but also in the present.

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Dionysius Redington3/7/2022 4:54 am
Well, I don't think anyone will accuse Met. Onuphrius of being an apologist for the Phanar. Read his latest statement on the 'technical operation' at the ROCOR Midwest Diocese website: https://www.chicagodiocese.org/news_220306_1 ---Dionysius Redington.
Rdr Daniel3/6/2022 10:12 pm
Dear Leonid, I understand tensions are high but I think your comments are unfair on the people posting here including myself and unless your St John the forerunner you probably best not calling your brothers snakes. I cannot see that these people are Bartholomew trolls (having served with unordained schismatics he is no longer a Patriarch), I personally have spoken out against his acts and those of the Patriarchate of Constantinople many times publicly including on this site and in Far harsher manner than against Moscow as it has done acts worthy of such criticism. If we have to judge, and feels hard to discern what is happening otherwise, it must be with an attempt to do so justly which means doing so with impartiality. it is not enough to condemn Constantinople then condone all Moscow does, such makes us hypocrites, this is an attempt to be righteous by picking the right side, but its not as simple as that. Now regarding the war, this is not really about that or the place to discus it. It is about the response of the church to the war and whether it is right for Patriarch Kiril to condemn priests, who have stayed loyal to the church despite great pressure to join Mr Epiphany’s rabble, as schismatics for not commemorating him when he had no canonical basis for doing so. Now very briefly regarding the war I know it is far more complex that the western narrative. But so is the situation in Russia itself, which has kept out some errors of the west but not fully repented of its own. And yes I have spoken out against the West and its attack on other nations. And yes I have mourned for my brothers in Syria and condemn the West’s support of the terrorists who killed them as I’m sure everyone else on here has. I do not hold that Putin is a terrorist and most western leaders are objectivly worse for the reasons you give, he has however taken a an action which has and will lead to peoples deaths and threatened nuclear war. But again this is not the time or place. Regarding Bartholomew see the start of this comment. In Christ. Daniel,
Johnathan3/6/2022 8:11 am
Dmitri, for you to compare the current government of Russia with the godless regime of the Bolsheviks, is pure malice, jealousy and bigotry at the highest levels. I wonder why you did not make such a suggestion when the phanar served the western atheist states and caused bloodshed and division in the Ukraine! The hypocrisy and hate towards the last bastion of Orthodox Christianity left on earth -RUSSIA- is disgusting and regretful. It serves to illustrate that the Church in the US and the west has failed in making sure that the orthodox people -especially the converts- have a correct and patristic mindset, rather than one that is worldly and materialistic. Do I need to remind you that the current regime in Ukraine came into power because of the godless western nations that orchestrated a color revolution ousting the legitimate president and installing a globalist puppet? Do you want to search the videos showing the atheist anti-christian Victoria Nuland passing out cookies and spreading her propaganda? Why do you not ask your primate to stop praying for the godless nations in which you live? Why do you continue to remain under heretics, globalist-collaborators and modernists? Why was your jurisdiction silent when the Christians of Syria and the middle east were being slaughtered? Why was P. Kyrill the only one to speak up in defense of our brothers in Christ? Did you praise him then, or were you to blind by your hate of anything Russian to be able to do so? Why did you not stand up and say something when the Russian Orthodox Christians living in Eastern Ukraine were being murdered by their own government? Did you rejoice to watch them being crucified and burned by the neo-nazi azov battalion? The videos are up on YOUTUBE(!) if you are interested in satisfying your hate of the Russian Christians. They wont take them down, because they believe that the videos serve to help "paralyze the Russian people"! This is your LGBTQ pushing government! I DARE you to stand up like a Christian and fight their evil. I challenge you to speak against your pro-homosexual, anti-christian, pro-abortion governments. You wont! and the reason you wont is because you are on the wrong side, the side of the WORLD! May God help you and open your eyes, and all of those like you!
Leonid3/6/2022 7:46 am
I see that there are a lot of snakes in this comment area and a lot of Patriarchete Bartholomew trolls. This is not an invasion but a liberation, and the fact that orthodox Christians are so blinded by main stream media narrative is beyond me. For the past eight years over 14,000 of your fellow brothers and sisters in eastern Ukraine were being bombed and murdered by their own Ukrainian military forces, and you said nothing! As a matter fact you were completely silent, and now because it suits the narrative of the Western globalist elites you start to come onto this website and shed crocodile tears for the Ukrainian people??? Did you shed tears when your governments were bombing and murdering people in Syria or Iraq, or Serbia, or Libya or any of the other nato/us victims? Where were your tears when your brothers and sisters in the Antiochian Orthodox Church were being murdered by western backed “freedom fighters“, which were in fact isis terrorist murderers? Instead of attacking your brother in Christ Vladimir Putin, maybe you should be praying for him and asking God to help him defeat the globalists and the neo-Nazis that have conquered Ukraine. Maybe you should take some time and read news that is outside the main stream, and then you will learn of the bio labs, the underground pedophilia and sex trafficking that goes on in Ukraine, the orphanages with our orthodox Christian children being raped and molested by western bureaucrats and politicians! Even the Huffington post reported about this in 2016! Your governments that are forcing your children to become transgender, while shoving homosexual propaganda down their throats are the same people claiming that Vladimir Putin is a terrorist and an aggressor. I would think that my orthodox brothers and sisters were smarter and wiser, but it appears that they are just as easily manipulated as the unbelievers in the western countries! And all of you attacking Patriarch Kyrill, I’m sure you were silent and maybe even an apologist for the godless servant of the globalists -P. Bartholomew- who took money from the government of Ukraine and the pentagon to cause a schism in the church of Ukraine leading to the murder of Christians, destruction of churches and persecution of the faithful! God help us all!
Philippe 3/4/2022 11:29 am
As a MP parishioner in Europe I will petition my priest and my bishop this weekend to stop the commemoration of Patriarch Kyrill, the MP is acting in a disgraceful manner towards its own people. If the Rocor has a single ounce of blood left from pre 2007 they would do exactly the same thing and follow the example of Metr Jean of Dubna, so far the only Bishop of the MP outside the Ukraine to petition his hierarchy to put pressure on their government to stop this war.
Basil Hill-Zeck3/4/2022 2:14 am
Dear brothers & sisters, although I do not support the government of Russia or the war in Ukraine, I don't think we should condemn Patriarch Kirill; we don't know what kind of pressure or threats he may be under from the civil authorities. I'm sure that if I were in his position, I'd do much worse...
Rdr Daniel3/3/2022 8:01 pm
I think Patriarch Kyril is being extremely tactless here; there seems to be the same sort of militant hyper defensive mindset as Constantinople had when it abolished its Russian tradition exarchate, all be it the situation here is of far more importance. The only canonical requirement is that a priest commemorate his bishop (though there are exceptions to this when his bishop has fallen into heresy) this is the universal tradition of the Church. the Russian custom of commemorating ones metropolitan and patriarch is a novel one likely introduced in response the uninites commemorating the pope. As the priests quoted in the last article righty said this is a custom, it is not a canonical requirement. Now despite commemorating not only their bishop but their metropolitan, they are being unmercifully accused by Patriarch Kyril of schism. which is not only a false accusation but one likely to drive them towards actual schism given the tense and emotional state most people are in right now. The contrast between the steadfastness and calmness of Metropolitan Omphory and his bishops amidst sufferings, their loyalty both to their mother church of Moscow and to their nation of Ukraine stands in marked contrast not only to the unlawful acts of the schismatics but to the Moscow Patriarchate which has subjected itself to the state so far as to bless a demonic building as a church and fail to support its people in Ukraine in the midst of war.
Daniel Smith3/3/2022 2:55 pm
Until Sergius is anathematized, Russia's repentance is incomplete.
Dmitri3/3/2022 2:50 pm
I would like to offer the example of the Russian Church Abroad that did stop commemoration of their primate in 1927. I understand the situation isn’t like for like, but it’s very similar. The Church Abroad ceased commemoration because the Patriarch capitulated to the Soviet government. The present ROC leadership has capitulated to a government ran by a former KGB-agent and has stood silently by whilst millions of their flock are bombed and fleeing into exile.
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