Ukraine's Parliament registers bill banning Russian Orthodox Church
The bill aims to defend Ukraine's national security as it associates "the liberation of Ukraine from the Russian Orthodox Church [to] another step towards independent Ukraine."
Russian news agency Interfax reported today that Ukraine's Verkhovna Rada registered a bill calling for the imposition of a nationwide ban on the Russian Orthodox Church in Ukraine.
According to the European Solidarity Party, the bill would ban any institutions or organizations which are in part or totally affiliated to the Russian Orthodox faith from carrying out religious activities "in canonical, organizational and other issues," it said in a message on Telegram.
🇷🇺🇺🇦It is forbidden to pray in Russian in Ukrainian churches Parishioners of the St. Nicholas Cathedral Church in Nikolaev saw this message at the entrance. “ pic.twitter.com/JDZpizVr4F— Тоби айоделе -Tboy🇷🇺 🇳🇬 (@TobiAyodele) November 23, 2022
It further added that the bill aims to defend Ukraine's national security as it associates "the liberation of Ukraine from the Russian Orthodox Church [to] another step towards independent Ukraine."
The move towards banning the Russian Orthodox Church is possibly owed to an accusation that church members are carrying out spying activities against the Ukraine government.
The Russian Orthodox Church in Ukraine has always played the role of the Russian intelligence. Yesterday, the Ukrainian security service conducted searches in 350 Russian Orthodox churches. Some of the priests presented passports and military cards of the USSR. The end.— Iuliia Mendel (@IuliiaMendel) November 23, 2022
The Orthodox Church of Ukraine declared on May 27, 2022, its complete break up from the Russian Orthodox Church due to disagreements over Russia's special military operation.
Orthodox Bishop Kirill, who has been Patriarch of Moscow and all Rus' and Primate of the Russian Orthodox Church on 1 February 2009, has backed Russia's military campaign in Ukraine, calling on supporters to rally to fight Moscow's "external and internal enemies."
Due to this, the Ukrainian Orthodox Church ceased the commemoration of Patriarch Kirill.
Following the move, the Moscow Patriarchate said he "understood" their decision to be caused by external pressure.
According to him, the Ukrainian Orthodox Church had reaffirmed its independent status acquired in the early 1990s, as only the Local Council of Kiev had the capacity to change the status of the Ukrainian Orthodox church.
However, this did not mean that it rejected its spiritual ties with Moscow, the Bishop said.
"We understand that His Beatitude Metropolitan Onufriy and the episcopate should act as wisely as possible today so as not to complicate the lives of their believers," Patriarch Kirill said in his first comments since the announcement.
He added that the "spirits of malice" wanted to divide the Orthodox people of Russia and Ukraine but they would not succeed.
Some bishops of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church disagreed with the decision of the Council in Kiev to declare the independence of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church.
Therefore, certain dioceses, including in Donbas and Crimea, continued to practice the commemoration of Patriarch Kirill.
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