Sunday, March 16, 2014

Kyiv Patriarchate hierarch fears being "wiped off the map"

Editorial Note: The posting of stories that might be sensitive to the UOC-KP position does not mean that I in any way endorse an uncanonical body or am trying to paint victims as villains or vice versa. If you've read this blog for any period of time you know that I'll post material from both "sides" of an argument to foster discussion. Does the Orthodox Church accept the UOC-KP or UAOC or any other such group? Categorically not. At the same time I've posted on the OCA's autocephaly to the great consternation of some readers fully acknowledging the lack of consensus on that topic. Please feel free to send me stories from the other camps. I'll happily repost them. A blessed Great Lent to you all.

(Time) - Archbishop Kliment of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church became a national hero to protestors at Maidan Square. Now, his church faces the prospect of being wiped off the map, as his homeland of Crimea prepares to vote for annexation by Russia

Archbishop Kliment began evacuating the holy icons from his church about two weeks ago, as soon as he realized that the region of Crimea, where he serves as the head of the Ukrainian Orthodox faith, would soon fall to the Russians. He wasn’t so much afraid of looting or arson from the Russian soldiers occupying his region of Ukraine, although that concerned him too. He was preparing for nothing less than the nullification of the Ukrainian Orthodox church. Under Russian rule, “we will simply be liquidated,” he says. “Our church is an enemy to the order that Russia would impose here, and our churches would be either looted or in the best case forced to close.”

Those are not empty fears. Next week, Russia will get its chance to annex the entire Crimean peninsula, whose referendum on Sunday is stacked in favor of full secession from Ukraine. The result isn’t likely to do terrible and lasting damage to Ukraine’s economy or demographics. Crimea is a depressed region, connected to the mainland by only two roads, and the majority of its two million people are ethnic Russians who will likely welcome the chance to rejoin their historical homeland. But for Ukraine’s people, their security and their sense of national pride, the loss of Crimea will be devastating. A generation since Ukraine won its independence from Moscow after the fall of the Soviet Union, it will again have to confront its own subversion, as well as the theft of its territorial jewel, the home of hundreds of thousands of ethnic Ukrainians and the birthplace of their religion.

The country remains, in many ways, a hostage of its own geography and history. Ukraine shares a wide-open border with Russia all along its east and south, and in the past week, around 80,000 Russian troops have surrounded it, according to Ukraine’s security council. If the government in Kiev uses force to defend Crimea from annexation, Russia is almost certain to launch a broader invasion. On Friday, the Russian Foreign Ministry even warned in a statement that it “reserves the right” to take parts of eastern Ukraine “under its protection.” The stick-up job implied in this threat is simple: give up Crimea and Russia may hold off on taking anything else...
Complete article here.


  1. "It began almost 20 years ago, soon after the collapse of the Soviet Union, when the head of the faith in Ukraine, Patriarch Filaret, demanded more autonomy from his superiors in Moscow to develop an independent branch of the church in Ukraine. The clerical council in Russia, known as the Holy Synod, not only refused that request but deemed it heretical, and the Moscow Patriarchate has been building a rival network of churches across Ukraine ever since."

    Talk of a complete falsification of history! The vast majority of Orthodox clerics and bishops in Ukraine remained loyal to their canonical hierarchs in 1992, and gave their allegiance to Metropolian Vladimir (Sabodan)! It is the false and schismatic "Kyivan Patriarchate" that has been building its own network of rival churches, not the canonical Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the Moscow Patriarchate!

  2. Replies
    1. That's Russian view of Charity? Russia is acting as a thug. If you want respect, give respect.

  3. I am frankly shocked that Joseph Flavius would continue to post such utter lies and distortions regarding the so called "Kyiv Patriarchate". This "article" is so skewed and so wrong on so many levels that I have to question if Joseph Flavius is bearing false witness to his readers. The "Kyiv Patriarchate" is 15% or less of the Orthodox faithful in Ukraine, and their are virtually non existent in Crimea and Eastern Ukraine. Most of them are in Kiev with others in Western Ukraine where all this horrific Maiden stuff started. No "Kyiv Patriarchate" clerics are national heroes because they helped fuel the flames of violence and hatred. Their clerics demanded churches be confiscated and their faithful staged unrest at the Kiev Caves Lavra and Pochaev Monastery. I implore Joseph Flavius to explain himself as to why he posts positive stories on this false church UNRECOGNIZED BY ALL OF CANONICAL ORTHODOXY. Hopefully the Byzantine Texas blog is just showing us examples of how distorted and Ill-informed the western media is.

    1. I'm well aware of the canonical status of the of the UOC-KP. If you have some contrary news stories, please do point them to me. What is available in English is much of the same "Russia is coming to get us." story over and over again.

      Do I post only the stories I wholly agree with? Certainly not. I post on the Latin Church, non-Chalcedonians, Nestorians, etc. At the same time, I'm not a news outlet. No one is paying me to do this. I post what I think is interesting or worth discussing. The first embers of global thermonuclear war I feel constitute such material.