International Orthodox Christian News

Moscow, January 21, Interfax – Actual status of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church (UOC) as a self-governed part of the Moscow Patriarchate shouldn’t be subjected to changes, Head of its Department for External Church Relations Archimandrite Kirill (Hovorun) said.

“Today it’s difficult to say whether the Local Council is going to raise a question of Ukrainian Orthodox Church status or not. I can say that today our Church enjoys a great number of rights that even some autocephalous Churches lack,” he said in his interview published by the NG-Religii paper on Wednesday.

Fr. Kirill believes, the Ukrainian Church “should better develop the potential of the status” it currently enjoys, “than to raise a question of changing it.”

“This is the only way to preserve peace in the Church and avoid new schisms,” the Archimandrite said.

The Russian Church Local Council granted independence and self-governance to the UOC in 1990. The Primate of the Ukrainian Church was given a title of “Metropolitan of Kiev and All Ukraine.”

According to the Council Act, Ukrainian bishops elect Metropolitan of Kiev, while the Moscow Patriarchate blesses their choice. Synod of the Ukrainian Church elects and consecrates bishops, establishes and abolishes dioceses in Ukraine. Metropolitan of Kiev and All Ukraine represents the Ukrainian Orthodox Church in the Holy Synod of the Russian Church as its permanent member.


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