The Information-Educational Department of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the Moscow Patriarchate (UOC-MP) reported on March 3rd that representatives of the schismatic so-called “Orthodox Church of Ukraine“ (OCU), after having secured the support of Uniate nationalists from “Right Sector“, occupied the temple of the UOC-MP in the village of Gnezdichnoye in the Ternopol region (Western Ukraine).
The archpriest of the local temple Stefan Balan reminded that in January, in order to preserve peace in the village, the church agreed to conduct church services in the street on an alternating basis and to seal off the temple.
However, on March 3rd representatives of the OCU for the third time violated their own conditions, having opened the sealed temple and started to hold a church service. Then the supporters of the UOC-MP demanded to let them also hold a service in the temple, to which they were refused.
According to the Abbot, while negotiations continued, the entrance to the church was blocked by 15-20 “Right Sector” militants. The latter, led by the pseudo-clergyman Ivan Lesik, started to attack the UOC-MP believers, force them out of the room into the street, and shout: “No Moskals should be here”. The police did not intervene at all.
“Once again there was a gross violation of human rights, and innocent people were attacked,” noted the Abbot of the religious community of the UOC-MP, which was completely unprotected during this gross violation of their rights and freedoms.
Prior to this incident the canonical UOC-MP reported that the authorities of the Rovno, Kirovograd, and Kiev regions are taking an active part in capturing UOC-MP temples. They spread propaganda about the so-called “transition” to the schismatic Constantinople structure, help Banderists with their illegal acts against the UOC-MP, and even arbitrarily “inventory” temples without any documents.
According to the religious scholar Dmitry Skvortsov, Petro Poroshenko needs a large-scale religious conflict closer to the first round of elections, when sociologists will show that he stands no chance of being elected peacefully.
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