Ambassador of Ukraine to the Vatican was summoned to Pope Francis for possible adoption by Kiev of the two bills, which may lead to a ban on the territory of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church-Moscow Patriarchate (UOC-MP). Verkhovna Rada refused to consider these documents in the background holding under the walls of Parliament shares the Orthodox against their adoption.
On calling the Ukrainian Ambassador to the head of the Roman Catholic Church said on his page in Facebook, a cleric of the UOC-MP, Archpriest Nikolai Danilevich. “Note of people’s deputies of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine. The Vatican is concerned about the possibility of adoption [of bills] and 4511 4128. Caused the Ambassador of Ukraine to the Vatican,” – said in the message.
According to Danilevich, “the Vatican fully agree with the position expressed by the Roman Catholic Bishop Stanislav Shyrokoradiuk on this subject.” The Bishop of Kharkiv-Zaporizhia diocese of the Roman Catholic Church in Ukraine Stanislav shyrokoradiuk criticized two bills on religious organizations.
On the eve of the Verkhovna Rada planned to discuss two draft laws on the status of religious organizations, but postponed consideration of the documents. The decision was made on the background of the action of Orthodox believers under the walls of Parliament, which they called “prayer”. “Religious people try to appeal to MPs through prayer that is not accepted irreligious, uncivil, unconstitutional laws that Parliament today introduced”, commented the action the representative of the Synodal information Department of the UOC-MP Bishop Clement. In Parliament has not explained whether the decision to postpone discussion of the bills with the action of believers.
UOC-Moscow Patriarchate fear that the adoption of these two documents will legitimize the seizure of churches in Ukraine, which, however, is already happening. Last Wednesday, representatives of the nationalist party “Freedom” captured the Holy Dormition Church of the UOC-MP in the village of Star Khmelnitsky region of Ukraine, the Deputy of regional Council from party “Freedom” Victor Burlik took part in the capture, called on the faithful of the UOC-MP to move to the Kyivan Patriarchate.
Earlier, on may 15, supporters of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church Kiev Patriarchate captured an Orthodox Church in the village Kynakhivtsi Ternopil region, breaking the doors of the temple. According to the Deputy of the Verkhovna Rada from the “Opposition bloc” Vadim Novinsky, in the last three years in Ukraine was captured by the 46 churches of the UOC-MP, which were subsequently handed over to the schismatics.
The Ukrainian Orthodox Church is actually split into two Patriarchates: Moscow subordinated the Russian Orthodox Church and the Kiev retains autonomy.
Bills 4128 “On amendments to the Law of Ukraine “On freedom of conscience and religious organizations” (regarding the change of subordination of religious communities) and 4511 “On the special status of religious organizations, senior centers are in the state, recognized by the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine as an aggressor” was registered in the Verkhovna Rada in 2016, the first in February, second in April.
The bill 4128 may entitle members to change the jurisdiction of the religious communities, the centers of which are in Ukraine and behind its limits. Because in most parishes there is no fixed membership, there can come any strangers and vote at the parish meeting to change the jurisdiction of the community.
The bill 4511 provides that organizations, senior centers are in the state recognized Ukraine “aggressor country” will be able to appoint metropolitans and bishops only by agreement with the Ukrainian authorities. The Verkhovna Rada in January 2015 recognized Russia as an aggressor state. Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the Moscow Patriarchate, which operates in Ukraine, is a self-governing Church of the Moscow Patriarchate. However, she refers to MP canonically, but not legally, according to the portal “Orthodoxy and the world”.