Clergymen of the Canonical Rovno Diocese Were Summoned for a Private Meeting with Petro Poroshenko

Translated by Ollie Richardson & Angelina Siard


Heads of regional administrations called priests of the Rovno diocese and urged them to appear for a conversation with Petro Poroshenko to discuss the issue of switching to the OCU.

During Petro Poroshenko’s visit to the Rovno region several clergymen of the Rovno diocese of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church [Moscow Patriarchate – ed] were summoned for a private conversation with the President. The conversation had to concern the transition of their religious communities to the OCU.

Several priests from the Zdolbunovsky and Ostrozhsky districts received an invitation over the phone to a meeting with the President of Ukraine from the heads of regional administrations, archpriest Viktor Zemlyanoy, the head of the department of interfaith resolutions of the Rovno diocese of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church [Moscow Patriarchate – ed]. The proposal to have a talk with the Guarantor [Poroshenko – ed] at first had a peaceful character, and then officials even tried to put pressure on the families of priests.

“The priests still do not want to give their names and are afraid of being punished by the authorities, but I can testify that there were such cases, priests were not only demanded to change their confessional accessory, but also to switch to the new OCU along with all their community,” commented archpriest Viktor. “In order to avoid being pressured by the authorities, some priests had to leave their house along with their family and go stay with relatives”.

As a reminder, the joint trip of Petro Poroshenko and the “honorary patriarch” of the OCU Filaret with Tomos to the regions of Ukraine started on January 10th from Rovno.

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