Court rejects Ukrainian Orthodox Church’s claim to usage of Chernigov cathedrals

Chernigov, Chernigov Province, Ukraine, January 25, 2024

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Ukrainian courts struck another blow against the Ukrainian Orthodox Church this week.

On Tuesday, January 23, a court in Chernigov rejected the Chernigov Diocese’s appeal to extend the agreements on the gratuitous usage of the Holy Trinity and Holy Transfiguration Cathedrals in the city, reports the Information-Education Department of the UOC.

In November, after examining 18 objects of the state-owned Ancient Chernigov National Architectural and Historical Preserve, including several churches and monasteries, the Ministry of Culture and Information Policy of Ukraine decided to close the Orthodox churches but leave the schismatic churches open.

The faithful are thus cut off from the relics of several saints that are housed in the Chernigov churches. The Ministry claims that all the UOC churches are in poor condition, while the schismatic churches are said to be in good condition.

The inspection of the holy sites included camouflaged armed men blocking the churches, preventing the faithful from entering to pray and worship.

The Chernigov Diocese filed a lawsuit, calling to oblige the National Preserve to extend the lease agreements with the Church on the Transfiguration Cathedral and the architectural monuments of the Holy Trinity Monastery, but the claim was dismissed.

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