14 Oct 2018 13:09

Ukraine never was, never will be Russian Orthodox Church's canonical territory - Poroshenko

KYIV. Oct 14 (Interfax) - Ukraine never was and never will be a canonical territory of the Russian Orthodox Church, Ukrainian President Petreo Poroshenko said on Sunday.

"The Ecumenical Patriarchate has definitively outlawed the annexation of the Kyiv metropolia by Moscow that took place in late 17th century. It said clearly and unequivocally that the Russian Orthodox Church has no canonic title to the Orthodox Church in Ukraine, [...] that our Orthodox Church is not subordinate to the Russian Orthodox Church. And Ukraine never was and never will be a canonic territory of the Russian church," Poroshenko said when speaking on Kyiv's Sophia Square, where the leader of the Kyiv Patriarchate Filaret is due to perform a thanksgiving mass on Sunday.

Ukraine having a united local church is a question of its national security, Poroshenko said.

"The issue of tomos and autocephaly goes far beyond the boundaries of church life," he went on to say. "It is a question of our independence, a question of our national security, a question of our statehood. This is a question of the world's geopolitics. And if it isn't, why on earth the decision that the Ecumenical Patriarch [Bartholomew of Constantinople] issued the day before yesterday was discussed by the Security Council of the Russian Federation at a meeting presided by Putin?" Poroshenko said.