Pochaev, Ukraine, December 9, 2022
A third hierarch of the canonical Ukrainian Orthodox Church has been notified of official suspicion by the Ukrainian Security Service (SBU), as the state continues to pressure the Church and search Church property throughout the country.
This time, the SBU reported its official suspicion to His Eminence Archbishop Job of Shumy, vicar of the Ternopil Diocese and rector of the Pochaev Theological Seminary, the SBU press service reports.
According to the statement, the SBU has gathered “unconditional evidence” of His Eminence’s “anti-Ukrainian activities,” claiming he distributed messages and incited religious enmity through an anonymous Facebook profile.
The SBU also says it found pro-Kremlin literature at his place of residence and at the seminary.
The state agency has routinely posted photos after its searches at UOC properties, usually showing spiritual and theological books and books against the Ukrainian schismatics. There are also many allegations that the SBU plants pamphlets and other literature that supposedly prove the Church is anti-Ukrainian.
The SBU also claims it has irrefutable evidence that His Eminence Metropolitan Joasaph, formerly of the Kirovograd Diocese (the Synod appointed him as a vicar of the Kiev Metropolis on November 23), coordinated “the spread of pro-Kremlin views in the region.” The SBU had searched his home back in October.
The Security Service has also notified Hieromonk Zachary, the priest of the Kiev Caves Lavra who was serving and anointing the faithful while a group of women sang a song about the spiritual rebirth of Holy Rus’ last month, is also under official suspicion of supporting and glorifying the war.