On Our Prospects

Metropolitan Luke (Kovalenko’s) wartime notes

St. Andrew's Cathedral, Zaporozhye. Photo: oldgallery.zabor.zp.ua St. Andrew's Cathedral, Zaporozhye. Photo: oldgallery.zabor.zp.ua     

Today, anyone who wants throws his own stone in the face of the Mother Church, pouring dirt over Her people and clergy, thinking up new fakes, legislature, and the like. Many have begun to discuss Her future, pronouncing non-rosy prospects (and when were they rosy?). Perhaps they have some logical arguments, in order to do so.

But as for the future—there will always be one! According to Holy Scripture, for some it will be the Kingdom of God, for others, eternal torments. During the Church’s earthly existence: Emperors placed Her outside the law, the godless organized a “red terror”, Khruschev promised to “show the last priest on television”; we all know these examples—where are these “powerful of the world” today, and what is their “glory”? But the Church continues to live on.

The wise Solomon teaches us that history always repeats itself, and there is nothing new under the sun. The history of the Church teaches us what people will withstand who remain faithful to God. If we approach the Ukrainian Orthodox Church from that point of view, then we can easily see that She has prospects, and here is why:

  • She speaks of the saving path to Christ and with Him, without any politics;

  • She is subjected to constant attacks from the media for not wanting to close Her eyes to sin;

  • despite the powerful pressure from without, She remains true to Herself, that is, to the Gospel commandments and laws of the Church;

  • disregarding the slander and constant lies, She remains dedicated not only to God, but also to Her people;

  • She is an object of hatred for people who thirst for war at any price.

An indirect testimony to the UOC’s faithfulness to God are the legislative initiatives of the Church’s enemies, as well as the unceasing false accusations from all sides. Some, based on fakes and leaflets that have no meaning for the state, invent new legislative bills, others accuse our clergy of being “FSB agents”, yet a third, accuse them of being “SBU agents”. And all this only because according to Christ commandments we pray for peace and call for the end of the bloodshed. From these examples it is perfectly clear who serves Caesar and who serves God, and that is why satan is lashing us so.

The UOC was, is, and always will be in our Motherland, because She is the soul of our people, prays for them, suffers with them, and strengthens them with all Her strength. As long as there are people who remain true to God and confess the Orthodox faith, they will need the Mother Church like air itself, because they will go to no other organization, no matter how decorated like a “church” it is. And that we have no few people like this can be witnessed by the fullness of our churches during services. Orthodox communities will always remain with their priests who are true to the Gospel truths and canons of the Church, under any, even the most non-advantageous conditions. And we can see this in the example of our parishes that were forcibly seized by the fighters against God. I have no hope that those who condemn the Church will hear this, but the right to confess the Orthodox faith and pray in our churches was given to us not only by God, but also by our country’s constitution. It is those people who are trying with all their might to war with the Church who have no prospects, for “they know not what they do”.

As for the future of the UOC, just as before, we have little interest in how the godless and enemies of our people relate to us. The most important thing for us is that we remain with God, and He will never abandon us! Everything else will be added to this. In fact, this is the foundation of our prospects—after all, the Lord told us, “Fear not, little flock, I am with you unto the end of the world!”

Metropolitan Luke (Kovalenko) of Zaporozhye and Melitopol
Translation by OrthoChristian.com



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