Jerusalem, March 29, 2023
The persecution of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church is the persecution of the entire Church and must stop now, says one hierarch of the Jerusalem Patriarchate.
His Eminence Archbishop Theodosius of Sebastia of the Patriarchate of Jerusalem held a meeting with an ecclesiastical delegation in Jerusalem, reports the Voice of the Orthodox Church of Jerusalem, during which he said:
We deeply condemn the systematic persecution organized against the Ukrainian Orthodox Church by the Kiev authorities, who, as we know, are implementing Western programs hostile to the entire Orthodox Church. They contradict its values and mission, threaten its very presence.
“We perceive the persecution of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church as persecution of the whole Church,” he continued.
“For our part, we demand urgent actions from the entire Orthodox community to stop these severe persecutions,” the Archbishop called.
He also praised the primate of the UOC:
His Beatitude Metropolitan Onuphry is a holy man of God who has repeatedly visited us in Jerusalem. He’s distinguished by a special humility, spirituality, and wisdom. He’s guided by these principles even now, in the darkest times and in the most difficult circumstances that have developed today in the historical monasteries of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church. We support all the spiritual leaders who have spoken out about the need to stop the persecution against the UOC.
The hierarch hopes that such statements will prove to be a deterrent to the Kiev authorities “who behave with hostility towards the Ukrainian Orthodox Church, engaged in incitement against it, following the instructions of their masters.”
Abp. Theodosius also affirmed, as he has done many times, that the Jerusalem Patriarchate recognizes only the canonical UOC under Met. Onuphry.