“Let them sue St. Luke himself”—UOC hierarch being prosecuted for quoting St. Luke of Simferopol

Cherkasy, Cherkasy Province, Ukraine, May 28, 2024

Photo: YouTube Photo: YouTube     

His Eminence Metropolitan Theodosy of Cherkasky of the canonical Ukrainian Orthodox Church is currently facing a third round of charges for “inciting religious enmity.”

The latest accusation against him is especially absurd, Met. Theodosy said in his address to the court, considering that what he’s being prosecuted for was a verbatim quote from St. Luke of Simferopol.

In his address to the court on May 22, the Metropolitan explained that St. Luke is revered not only in the Ukrainian Orthodox Church, but throughout the entire Orthodox world, and especially in Greece, reports the Union of Orthodox Journalists, with reference to video of his address.

“Currently, hundreds of churches have been built in his honor in Ukraine, Greece, Europe, America, and Asia. The Society of Orthodox Doctors named after St. Luke is being established. Medical institutions are being opened in his honor, international conferences are being held, and books are being published. The memory of St. Luke is perpetuated in the Cherkasy Province,” he said.

“The whole absurdity of this situation is that the OCU [schismatics—OC] also honors St. Luke, building churches in his honor. And at the same time, they didn’t like the literal quoting of St. Luke. Since it reveals their theological ecclesiological inadequacy, they perceive it as inciting religious hostility against them.”

“Let them sue St. Luke himself,” His Eminence stressed.

It’s noteworthy that in all the cases against him, the so-called “victims” are a family, the father of which was suspended from serving after apostatizing to the schismatics.

It’s not Met. Theodosy who is inciting religious enmity, the hierarch said, “but the representatives of the OCU, who are posing as victims in this production.”

The fact of the criminal proceedings also indicates that the Cherkasy branch of the Ukrainian Security Service has a personal interest in removing Met. Theodosy from his post as ruling hierarch of the Cherkasy Diocese.

Recall that the Metropolitan has done much to bring international attention to the facts of the state persecution of holy Orthodoxy in Ukraine. He is among the founding hierarchs of the international human rights association Church Against Xenophobia and Religious Discrimination and has addressed the United Nations several times.

Met. Theodosy was under round-the-clock house arrest for much of 2023, and has been under nighttime house arrest ever since.

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