Translated by Ollie Richardson & Angelina Siard
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On July 28th Kiev celebrated the Day of the Baptism of Rus’. Also on this day a religious procession of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the Kiev Patriarchate took place, during which a prayer for Ukraine and the United Local Ukrainian Orthodox Church.
Thousands of Ukrainians gathered in front of Vladimir cathedral, where the leader of the Kiev Patriarchate held a prayer before the religious procession to Vladimir hill.
They were joined by the top officials of the country, among whom there was the president of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko with the first lady, members of the Cabinet of Ministers, heads of law enforcement bodies, and military personnel. In addition, the head of the Ukrainian Autocephalous Orthodox Church Metropolitan Macarius came to the event.
Ukrainian law enforcement bodies undertook unprecedented security measures for the protection of Petro Poroshenko.
“From 6 am today there is Armageddon in the center of Kiev – the streets are blocked off, all traffic was stopped, people with just ordinary things are stopped and carefully searched. Dogs: the SBU, police, the military, armed troops, and even firemen are preparing to heroically defend Filaret’s sect,” said the former deputy of the Verkhovna Rada Aleksandr Golub.
“Today at the station I saw who was brought here! Bums from deep Galician villages – grouped together and sent here by local state administrations – mixed with Maidan activists,” added the politician.
“Morons! This scum blocked all of Kiev, and there is no way of travelling home from the airport, with children and baggage,” confirms the Kiev businessman Dmitry Shvets.
During the celebrations on the occasion of the 1030th anniversary of the Baptism of Rus’ the president spoke about the “aggressor” and the “hand of the Kremlin”.
In turn, his Beatitude Metropolitan Onufry, on the contrary, called Ukrainians for humility, forgiveness, and love to each other.
Chanting “Death to enemies!” without icons, but with Ukrainian flags
Unlike the large-scale Religious procession of Ukrainian the Orthodox Church that took place on July 27th and gathered 250,000 believers, the event of the Kiev Patriarchate wasn’t able to brag about such size.
Before heading to Vladimir hill the slogans “Ukraine Above All!”, “Glory to Ukraine! Glory to heroes!”, and “Glory to the nation! Death to enemies!” were heard.
Those who commented on the event of the Kiev Patriarchate on the air of “Channel 5” [owned by Petro Poroshenko – ed] offered reminders about Moscow and its attempts to disrupt the granting of Tomos to Ukraine.
Almost all the participants of the religious procession were wearing embroidery. Also, it was noted that only one icon was being carried — the Icon of the Protection of the Mother of God.
The attendees also unfurled a large flag of Ukraine and, instead of prayers, sang the anthem of Ukraine and chanted slogans.
There were more than 4,000 priests of the Kiev Patriarchate!
According to those who commented on the air of “Channel 5”, the religious procession of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the Kiev Patriarchate was attended by at least 100,000 people.
At the same time, the event on July 28th was considerably smaller than July 27th’s event – a grandiose Religious procession of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church that brought together 250,000 people.
In addition, it was visually seen how approximately 1/5th of the participants of the religious procession consisted of priests of the Kiev Patriarchate.
According to the statement of Zoryan Shkiryak, at least 70,000 Ukrainians participated in the event. This is much less than the Religious procession of the (Canonical) Ukrainian Orthodox Church. And it is less than the figure sounded by “Channel 5”.
And according to the statement of the First Deputy Minister of Internal Affairs Sergey Yarovy, on July 28th 65,000 people passed along the streets of Kiev, and not 70,000. He also reported that 2,500 law enforcement officers were responsible for their safety.
It should be noted that on July 27th, according to Yarovy, 5,000 police officers ensured law and order during the Religious procession of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church.
After the parishioners of the Kiev Patriarchate reached Vladimir hill, a prayer for Ukraine and the Ukrainian Local Orthodox Church took place, during which Filaret (Denisenko) read the Evangel and asked for afflatus in relation to the Verkhovna Rada and Petro Poroshenko:
“Listen, Oh Lord, to the prayers of your faithful. And offer your blessing to start the matter of uniting Orthodox Christians into the local Ukrainian Church. Give the wisdom and inspiration of your Holy spirit to his Holiness Patriarch Bartholomew, the president of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko, the Verkhovna Rada, and all who work for this purpose. And complete the good deed of recognising the Ukrainian Church.”
He also added that never did religious processions of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the Kiev Patriarchate gather so many people.
“The ‘procession’ of Filarets took place under the State and banderist flags, instead of icons. And with the slogans ‘Glory to Ukraine!’, ‘Ukraine above all’…”
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