The UOC-MP are confident that the people will not celebrate Catholic Christmas

© RIA Novosti / Pavel to Listenpreise in photobacteria Christmas. Archival photoThe UOC-MP are confident that the people will not celebrate Catholic Christmas© RIA Novosti / Pavel to Listenpreise the image Bank

The decision of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine to make Christmas day a public holiday does not reflect the real views of the citizens of the country, said in an interview with «Vesti» the head of the outreach Department of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church-Moscow Patriarchate (UOC-MP) Archbishop of Irpen Clement.

The Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine informed on Thursday passed a law that at the official level on December 25 is declared a day off in connection with celebration of Catholic Christmas. The document must be signed by the President of Ukraine. The law will come into force on the day following the day of its publication in the official press.

The Roman Catholic Church celebrates one of the main Christian holidays — Christmas — 25 Dec. Russian, Jerusalem, Georgian, Serbian Orthodox Church and the Ukrainian Greek-Catholic Church and old believers celebrate Christmas 7 January. This day in Ukraine is an output. Holidays in the country are also Easter and Pentecost.

«Christ was born once and not twice. This decision of the Verkhovna Rada showed that it does not care about the opinions of the people of Ukraine. According to all polls, the vast majority of Ukrainians celebrate Christmas on January 7th. It was not until the election of these deputies, so it will be after them. But there is another statistic that gives you the opportunity to understand the reasons for such decision of deputies», — said the Archbishop Clement.

He cited data that more than 80% of Ukrainians believe the most important holidays, Easter and Christmas. And almost as many citizens as he said, «do not fully trust the Verkhovna Rada».

«Therefore, it seems that the attempts of the transformation of Christmas from a religious event into a farce deputies tend to weaken the overwhelming confidence of the Church in the background of a complete default of the Verkhovna Rada», — concluded the representative of the UOC-MP.

Ukraine currently operates the canonical Ukrainian Orthodox Church, which is a self-governing Church of the Moscow Patriarchate, and unrecognized by the world Orthodox Church structures — the Kyiv Patriarchate (UOC KP) and Ukrainian Autocephalous Orthodox Church (UAOC). The UOC-MP has repeatedly reported on cases of harassment of priests and seizures of the Orthodox churches representatives of the UOC-KP.