Ecumenical Patriarchate grants autocephaly to Ukraine

Ecumenical Patriarchate grants autocephaly to Ukraine

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Ukrinform
The Holy and Sacred Synod of the Ecumenical Patriarchate has decided to issue a tomos of autocephaly to the Orthodox Church in Ukraine.

The Synod approved a respective decision at a meeting in Istanbul on October 11, according to an Ukrinform correspondent.

"To renew the decision already made that the Ecumenical Patriarchate proceed to the granting of Autocephaly to the Church of Ukraine," reads the decision, signed by 12 members of the Holy and Sacred Synod and Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew.

According to the document, the Synod satisfied the request of Patriarch Filaret and recognized the head of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the Kyiv Patriarchate as the canonical hierarch of the Orthodox Church.

Head of the Ukrainian Autocephalous Orthodox Church Makariy was also reinstated in his canonical status.

"To accept and review the petitions of appeal of Filaret Denisenko, Makariy Maletych and their followers, who found themselves in schism not for dogmatic reasons, in accordance with the canonical prerogatives of the Patriarch of Constantinople to receive such petitions by hierarchs and other clergy from all of the Autocephalous Churches," the decision says.

In addition, the Synod recognized as illegal the annexation of the Metropolitan of Kyiv by Moscow in 1686.

"To revoke the legal binding of the Synodal Letter of the year 1686, issued for the circumstances of that time, which granted the right through oikonomia to the Patriarch of Moscow to ordain the Metropolitan of Kyiv, elected by the Clergy-Laity Assembly of his eparchy, who would commemorate the Ecumenical Patriarch as the First hierarch at any celebration, proclaiming and affirming his canonical dependence to the Mother Church of Constantinople," the document says.

The members of the Synod urged all parties involved to avoid conflicts.

"[We] appeal to all sides involved that they avoid appropriation of Churches, Monasteries and other properties, as well as every other act of violence and retaliation, so that the peace and love of Christ may prevail," reads the decision.

The session of the Holy and Sacred Synod of the Ecumenical Patriarchate in Istanbul lasted for three days - from October 9 to October 11. On Wednesday and Thursday, the Synod listened to a report by Exarchs Archbishop Daniel of Pamphilon and Bishop Hilarion of Edmonton following their visit to Ukraine.

On April 19, the Verkhovna Rada endorsed President Petro Poroshenko's address to Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew to grant Ukraine a tomos of autocephaly. This idea was also supported by the leadership of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the Kyiv Patriarchate and the Ukrainian Autocephalous Orthodox Church (UAOC).

As part of preparations for the granting of autocephaly to the Orthodox Church of Ukraine, the Ecumenical Patriarchate appointed Archbishop Daniel of Pamphilon from the United States and Bishop Hilarion of Edmonton from Canada as its exarchs in Kyiv.

Spokesman for the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the Kyiv Patriarchate Yevstratiy Zoria explained earlier that after the decision by the Holy and Sacred Synod of the Ecumenical Patriarchate to grant Ukraine a tomos of autocephaly, an assembly will be convened in Kyiv with the participation of bishops of the UOC-KP, the UAOC, and the UOC-MP, who appealed to the Ecumenical Patriarch with the request for the tomos. The assembly will carry out a church unification, forming a united local Orthodox church, and will elect its leader.

After that, the head of the united local autocephalous Ukrainian Orthodox church will receive the tomos as a document (letter).


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