The expense of Poroshenko as Kiev is struggling with «moskalsky» Church

© RIA Novosti / Grigory to Castinplace in photomontage parishioners of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the Moscow Patriarchate in KievThe expense of Poroshenko as Kiev is struggling with «moskalsky» Church© RIA Novosti / Grigory to Castinplace in photovacation of Skripunov

In the last three years Ukrainians constantly fed the data of sociological research, all of which as one stated: the canonical Ukrainian Orthodox Church-Moscow Patriarchate (UOC-MP) no support, she has few temples, etc. and suddenly the Ministry of culture of Ukraine publishes the data are diametrically opposed: it turns out, the UOC-MP is the largest religious organization in the country.

But last spring, the Church accused the Ministry of in custom-made TV spots, the effect of diminishing its real impact on society: official Kiev, in addition to repressive laws and storming the Orthodox churches of the nationalists, it was necessary to create in the minds of ordinary citizens the right picture.

In reality and on paper

The Ministry report provides data not only on parishes, but the clergy. So, out of the total number of the clergy of all the Ukrainian denominations-third of the clergy belong to UOC MP. But the self-styled «Kiev Patriarchate» (KP) are 5264 ward directly proportional to this indicator, the number of the clergy.

«Official statistics of the Ministry of culture of Ukraine confirms an unquestionable fact — despite the massive oppression of rights and freedoms of believers of UOC-MP reported by international monitoring organizations, the Ukrainian Orthodox Church is the largest religious organization with dynamic development and spiritual potential. Because the number of its believers, who decided to devote himself to serving God in the priesthood and monasticism in tens times exceeds the same statistic in other religious organizations», — commented on the data, the head of the Information Department of the UOC-MP Bishop of Irpen Clement.

But the data of the Ministry of culture has not been widely publicized in the media — unlike opinion polls, which have been published prior to the discussion of controversial bills No. 4511 and # 4128, allowing complete control over the UOC-MP.

Special popularity was gained by the Ukrainian sociological research of the Razumkov Center. Respondents were asked several questions, including: «To what religious organization do you belong?»; «Who of the leaders of religious organizations do you trust/not trust the most?»; «Do you consider necessary the establishment of one national Orthodox Church in Ukraine?».
And what is the organization, according to the study, was the largest and most authoritative? Of course, the «Kiev Patriarchate» to him belong 39.5% of respondents. But the greatest confidence index (26,2) has its head — «Patriarch» Filaret Denisenko. The flock of the UOC-MP account for 23.3 percent of believers, Metropolitan Onufry supposedly nobody love, its trust index is equal to 5.3.

«People are afraid to tell the truth»

Similar data have repeatedly cited and other social service — Sociological group «Rating», Kyiv international Institute of sociology and the Fund «Democratic initiatives». Ukrainian sociologists are convinced that the CP has the flock in all regions of the country, even beyond the control of official Kiev.

«In those regions in which the absolute majority are churches of the Moscow Patriarchate, the people themselves refer to «the Kyiv Patriarchate». It seems logical, if they live in Ukraine, «belong» to this Church», said in 2015 the head of the Fund «Democratic initiatives» Irina Bekeshkina. It should be noted that this organization actively participated in both the Maidan.

In most studies the second largest for «KP» is a group of «just Orthodox» (or «Orthodox, who do not belong to any Church») — in average 25%.

«On some issues it is evident that they are specially formulated to downplay the role of the canonical Orthodox Church in the Ukrainian public life», — said political analyst Vitaly Leibin.

This also applies to the version of «just Orthodox», because to count myself among them «in terms of military campaigning» is safest. That is, 25% of «just Orthodox» actually belong to the UOC-MP and just afraid to say so publicly.

In other words, the Ukrainian sociology frankly serves the interests of official Kiev, to the detriment of science. But any expert in this field says that well-formed questions and answers are the key to valid research.

«It’s clear that the UOC-MP holds in the Ukrainian conflict neutrality, while some other Christian denominations do not. The Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church, Ukrainian Autocephalous Orthodox Church and «Kiev Patriarchate» are openly supporting the so-called anti-terrorist operation and serve as chaplains in the current Ukrainian army. It is clear that on the background of a military campaign polls can give a large error,» explains the expert.
The last argument Poroshenko

«The polls that now there are entirely tailored to the social problem. The ruling elite seriously — even faster than expected — want to change the cultural and national code of the country in the direction of the national project. The universal internationalism of the Russian Orthodox Church is stopping them, they want local. Therefore, some questions are designed to downplay the role of the canonical Ukrainian Orthodox Church in public life,» says Leibin.

«Unfortunately, those custom polls referenced by the «Kiev Patriarchate» and lobbyists of the anti-Catholic bills do not show the real picture and are not intended to display, but to form a certain public opinion,» — said the head of the Legal Department of the UOC-MP Archpriest Oleksandr bakhov.

Meanwhile, the events of July last year, which became a real shock for the Ukrainian authorities, showed the futility of such games in «sociology,» then UMTS MP called on the faithful to commit all-Ukrainian procession of love, peace and prayer for Ukraine and, thus, clearly identified its role as a reconciler of the divided society. Before the March began, many believed that everyone ignores. However, when came to Kiev about 100 thousand believers, there is not really scared. And again, in frustration, began to manipulate the data.

«The number of participants (the procession of the UOC-MP in Kyiv — ed.) was around 11-12 thousand people», — assured journalists the adviser of the head of the Ukrainian interior Ministry Zoryan Shkiriak.

But in the same procession KP, held on July 28 — the day after the all-turn — he counted 17 thousand participants. In the «Patriarchy», said about 30 thousand, and some media were talking about 35 thousand.

All-Ukrainian religious procession is the most striking of the many examples of what the congregation of the UOC-MP is very large and has a huge mobilization potential. What is the only prayer «of the admonition of deputies» in the Verkhovna Rada on may 18, when it was planned to consider the anti-Catholic bills. Literally within one hour it has gathered about 10 thousand believers.

It seems that now the Ukrainian authorities and President Poroshenko remains nothing except how to «shape public opinion»: to intimidate believers radicals with metal bars and chains does not work — they still manage to defend their temples. Attempt to drive the Church into a corner with laws failed they outraged the entire world. And the question is, will it be possible to direct the minds of Ukrainians in the right direction, so that, as stated in the CP, «the local Church is created by the people», there are only two possible answers: «rather no» and «no.»