Lvov, April 6, 2023
Local authorities and representatives of the schismatic “Orthodox Church of Ukraine” completely demolished an Orthodox church in Lvov today.
The wooden Church of St. Vladimir was quickly destroyed by backhoe:
“Look at the future of Ukraine,” someone off-camera can be heard saying, “they’re demolishing a church and they rejoice.”
Maxim Kozitsky, the head of the Lvov Provincial Administration, described the blasphemous act as the dismantling of the “last outpost of the Moscow Church in Lvov.”
Recall that His Eminence Metropolitan Philaret of Lvov stated in June, reflecting on the Ukrainian Church’s change in status at its Council in late May: “So now we are completely outside the Russian Orthodox Church. Patriarch Kirill is no longer the primate of our Church in any form.”
A few days ago, radicals even disrupted the funeral of a fallen soldier at the Cathedral of St. George in Lvov, evicting the faithful and seizing the church.
And in the village of Novopoltavka in the Nikolaev Province, a wooden Orthodox church was set on fire yesterday.
Estimates on the number of churches destroyed since the war in Ukraine began last February vary considerably. According to a UNESCO report published yesterday, the organization has verified damage to 108 religious sites. Meanwhile, the World Council of Churches reported in February nearly 500 churches and religious sites have been destroyed, including 142 belonging to the canonical Ukrainian Orthodox Church.
Among the most recent casualties was the Iveron Monastery in Odessa, which was damaged again last month. “In the evening of March 21, 2023, as a result of enemy shelling, the buildings of the Iveron Monastery of the Odessa Diocese were once again damaged,” reports the Information-Education Department of the UOC.
Four people were injured, including one hospitalized, but thankfully no one died.
The diocesan press service noted that a chapel at the monastery was badly damaged, btu the Iveron Icon of the Mother of God wasn’t damaged at all.