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Group of UOC-MP Orthodox Faithful Ask Constantinople Patriarch for Refuge

29.12.2004, [17:29] // UOC-MP //
Kyiv—A group of faithful of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church-Moscow Patriarchate (UOC-MP) has appealed to the patriarch of Constantinople asking him to take under his mantle those who “have become in discord in the churches of the Moscow Patriarchate.” They ask him “to open in Ukraine a permanent structure of parishes of the Ecumenical Patriarchate.” The cause of this appeal is the presidential election in Ukraine, through which the clergy and part of the faithful of the church found themselves on two sides of the barricades because of their civic position. RISU received the group’s letter on 29 December 2004. Signatures are being collected.

”Over the last months,” reads the letter, “political events in connection with the presidential election have entered into the life of every citizen of Ukraine, to some degree or another… They have agitated our church life, which seemed to be so quiet and peaceful. Suddenly we felt ourselves homeless, because in the churches of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church-Moscow Patriarchate they began to separate us, depending on our civic position. Once, entering our church, we heard not the preaching of the Gospel, but words in support of the ‘blessed’ candidate. During confession, they suggested to some of us that we do penance because we did not vote for ‘that’ candidate; others were asked to leave the church for this ‘crime.’”

The authors of the letter maintain that, even after the UOC-MP’s Kyiv metropolitanate forbid campaigning from the pulpit, campaigning for the “blessed” candidate continued in many churches of the UOC-MP. The UOC-MP hierarchy, according to these faithful, to this day has not commented on the campaigning that was openly going on in almost all the churches of the UOC-MP before the second round of the election on 21 November. The hierarchy has also not condemned the massive falsifications of the results of the second round of the election on the part of the “blessed” candidate.

”Today we are like sheep without a shepherd,” reads the appeal. “We think that today the Ecumenical Patriarchate can accept under its mantle all those who have become in discord in the churches of the Moscow Patriarchate. We ask Your Holiness to respond to our pain and to open in Ukraine a permanent structure of parishes of the Ecumenical Patriarchate.”

Yesterday I posted something somewhere around here that there would be changes in Ukie Orthodoxy but I honestly didn't expect this so soon. I got this article from "RISU"
Lauro

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Lauro,

Thanks for that info. I have no particular insight into ecclesio-political machinations in the hierarchical structures of Orthodoxy. However, I have doubts that the EP would want to get to get himself embroiled in this, unless it were to become a movement toward an autocephalous pan-Ukrainian Orthodox Church, with UOC-KP and UOAC involvement.

Many years,

Neil


"One day all our ethnic traits ... will have disappeared. Time itself is seeing to this. And so we can not think of our communities as ethnic parishes, ... unless we wish to assure the death of our community."
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Lauro, the EP has already bowed out once when the autocephalists in Ukraine aproached him. However, he did take a large part of the U.S. Ukrainian Orthodox church under his omophorion.

Since the Estonian snafu the EP has generally been very sensitive to the desires of the MP. Since this would involve many more faithful and clergy, be much higher profile, and cause much more consternation from Moscow than the Estonian "crisis", I don't think the EP will act soon, if it all.

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The question I find myself asking is: who are these "MP faithful" that support Yuschenko but are un-willing to join the UOC-KP?

Are they ethnic Russians that cannot bring themselves to join a Kyiv-based Church?

Do they want to remain "cannonical" as that term is defined by the MP and the EP?

Perhaps both?

Interesting. Very interesting.

Second point. While I agree that this won't happen, it would certainly be nice if the EP took advantage of the opportunity and took Moscow to task for its "just below the surface" support of the Putin/Lusashenko/ Kuchma regime.

How can His All Holiness maintain credibility if he continues to tacitly support the MP in its current state? Would not it be a bold step to say to the MP - "We have let you have your way in Ukraine long enough. Either clean up your act or we will re-take what is jurisdictionally ours."

That would be fun, now wouldn't it?

Yours,

hal

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Dear Hal:

A very interesting situation, indeed, IF the wishes of some disaffected UOC-MP groups are granted.

Then, the alphabet soup expands: UOC-MP, UOC-KP, UAOC, UGCC, and UOC-EP? wink

Amado

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Amado,

Not to forget the UO vagante body of which we spoke not long ago - I can't locate the thread and I'm not sure that they had, as yet, a real name that one could reduce to alphabetese but, in time and with the proper attitude, I'm sure they could get in the game biggrin .

Many years,

Neil


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Quote
Originally posted by Amadeus:
Dear Hal:

A very interesting situation, indeed, IF the wishes of some disaffected UOC-MP groups are granted.

Then, the alphabet soup expands: UOC-MP, UOC-KP, UAOC, UGCC, and UOC-EP? wink

Amado
You're making my head spin. wink "Going therefore, acronym all nations." That has to be in Ukrainian and Russian bibles somewhere. wink

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Today on the RISU site:

Quote
Patriarch of Constantinople Congratulates Yushchenko

04.01.2005, [11:31] // Foreign relations //
Istanbul— Patriarch Bartholomew I of Constantinople on 3 January 2005 sent greetings to Ukrainian President-elect Viktor Yushchenko. The full, original English text is given below.

Your Excellency Mr. Viktor A. Yushchenko, President-elect of Ukraine, our Modesty’s beloved in the Lord: Grace and peace from God.

On behalf of the Mother Church of Christ and our Modesty as the Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople, we are pleased to convey to Your Excellency our satisfaction on your election to the Presidency of Ukraine.

We are constantly praying to Almighty God to bless the long-suffering nation of Ukraine with peace, justice, prosperity and freedom for all its citizens.

We are painfully aware and saddened by the present crises of Orthodoxy in Ukraine, the faith of the forefathers of the Ukrainian people.

As we have expressed repeatedly our concerns about the unacceptable disunity within Orthodoxy in Ukraine, we have also repeatedly expressed our readiness to assist to ameliorate this painful situation.

It seems that it is most propitious as this junction to initiate the process of healing this disunity, and the Great Church of Christ, the Ecumenical Patriarchate, is ready to render any assistance in this endeavor.

Congratulating Your Excellency once again, we bestow upon your our patriarchal blessings and prayers for your health and well being in this New Year and for many years to come.

At the Patriarchate, 3 January 2005

Your Excellency’s
fervent supplicant before God

+ Bartholomew
Archbishop of Constantinople,
New Rome and Ecumenical Patriarch

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Dear Friends,

Yes, the above confirms the ongoing great charity of His All-Holiness the Patriarch toward the suffering people of Ukraine . . . wink

I've heard that the UGCC and the UOC-KP are planning a common conference to express unity etc.

Anyone heard anything about this?

Usually the Russian press refers to us as "Uniates, Autocephalists and Filaretites."

Or "the Kyivan churches" for short.

I can think of worse things to be called! smile

Alex


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