Persecuted Metropolitan Longin again hospitalized with heart problems

Bancheny, Chernivtsi Province, Ukraine, December 13, 2023

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His Eminence Metropolitan Longin of Bancheny, a hierarch of the canonical Ukrainian Orthodox Church who is revered throughout Ukraine and Romania and Moldova, was hospitalized yesterday with atrial fibrillation.

This is the second time the Metropolitan, who is also the father of hundreds of orphans, has been hospitalized since the state began its campaign against him for his firm Orthodox stance. His Eminence suffered a stroke back in July.

Though officially recognized as a Hero of Ukraine for his work with orphans, the state now considers him an enemy because he staunchly remains within the Orthodox Church. He is accused of “inciting religious enmity”—the same phony charge being brought against a number of Orthodox hierarchs.

Armed security forces surrounded and searched his monastery last month, scaring the orphans who live there.

Referring to a source in the Holy Ascension-Bancheny Monastery, the Union of Orthodox Journalists reports that doctors hospitalized Met. Longin today, diagnosed with atrial fibrillation.

The clergy and parishioners of the monastery ask the faithful to pray for their pastor. They have no doubt that his ailing health is due to the constant pressure from the authorities and the court sessions in the state’s campaign against him.

Hundreds of Orthodox faithful in both Bucharest and Chișinău have rallied outside their respective Ukrainian embassies in support of Met. Longin, who is ethnically Romanian.

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