ROC is waiting for clarification from Constantinople after accusations of a split in Ukraine

© RIA Novosti / Alexei Danceparty in photobacteria Bartholomew of Constantinople. Archival photo<img src="/wp-content/uploads/sites/5/2018/09/e0d6c6a28a32808a724c9d26ab5c1616.jpg" alt="ROC is waiting for clarification from Constantinople after accusations of a split in Ukraine" />© RIA Novosti / Alexei Danceparty the image Bank

The Russian Orthodox Church «takes a pause» and wait for «further clarification» regarding some of the statements by the hierarchy of Constantinople, said on Friday, RIA Novosti press-Secretary of the Patriarch of Moscow and all Russia Kirill, the priest of Alexander Volkov.

Speaking at the concluded this week the Synaxis is the Assembly of all bishops of the Church of Constantinople, Patriarch Bartholomew, in particular, stated that the Patriarchate of Constantinople has exclusive rights to the solution for the whole Orthodox world that the difficulties in the Ukraine is not new and not created by the Ecumenical Patriarchate. Bartholomew also questioned the canonicity of the subordination of the Ukrainian Church to the Moscow Patriarchate and called the Russian Church is responsible for the split in Ukraine.

«After the meeting Patriarch Kirill and Bartholomew (August 31 – ed.) we have seen some not fully clear statements from the Constantinople hierarchy. Now, I think we need to take a pause and get some further clarification,» — said Volkov.

He, in particular, drew attention to those publications that have become available in recent days and have been published in some American Greek sites.

«It was a publication from the speech of Patriarch Bartholomew to his followers at the bishops’ meeting, which was held 1-3 September. These statements cause at least bewilderment and surprise, and to a greater extent serious misunderstanding. We need to be patient, to finally clear the air,» — said the press Secretary of the Patriarch.

He also added that «the political tension that exists now in the world around our country as we regret, and sometimes affects the Church.»

The President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko is trying to achieve recognition of non-canonical religious structures and creation on their basis one local Autocephalous Church in Ukraine, outside the framework of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church. Previously, he said that the government will not interfere in internal Church Affairs, but again spoke of the need of autocephaly for Ukraine.

The episcopate of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church responded that the issue is about the attempts of external forces to turn the Church into an integral part of geopolitics, of ideology and national security, although this is contrary to the vocation of the Church. In the UOC believe that the Church should not be a tool in the hands of the state or political ideology, no matter where it comes from. The bishops believe that attempts to change the status of the Church in Ukraine will deepen the rift in Orthodoxy and society and will lead to the restriction of rights and freedoms.

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