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New York City: Statement by Synod of Bishops of Russian Church Abroad on Appointment to Kiev of Exarchs of Constantinopolitan Patriarchate

Standing before God in prayerful solidarity with our long-suffering brethren of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church, headed by His Beatitude Onufry, Metropolitan of Kiev & All Ukraine who, being revered and respected throughout the whole of the Orthodox world, is primate of the only recognized canonical Orthodox Church of Christ in Ukraine we, the members of the Synod of Bishops of the Russian Church Abroad, which carries out its ministry in the lands of North America, Europe, Australia, New Zealand, and other nations of the West, ministering to numerous émigrés from the lands of historic Rus’ and their descendants, express our profound indignation at the blatant violation of the holy canons by the Orthodox Church of Constantinople. The decision of its hierarchy to send its "exarchs" into the canonical territory of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church, without the agreement and permission of His Holiness Kyrill, Patriarch of Moscow & All Russia, and His Beatitude Onufry, Metropolitan of Kiev & All Ukraine, is a gross and unprecedented incursion by one Local Church into another canonical territory, which has its own Local Church that alone is responsible for the Orthodox flock of that country. This action, taken by His Holiness, Patriarch Bartholomew, and his fellow archpastors, threatens the unity of Holy Orthodoxy.

In light of these developments, we call upon the clergy and flock of the Russian Church Abroad, together with the other Local Orthodox Churches, to redouble their holy and ardent prayers for peace in Ukraine, and unfailingly to oppose the evil presently befalling our persecuted brothers and sisters, the children of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church. May the Great and Supreme Head of the Church, the Good Shepherd Jesus Christ, grant strength to His Beatitude, Metropolitan Onufry, and to the episcopacy of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church, to which all those who have [separated themselves] should repentantly and in appropriate manner approach for canonical reception into the Orthodox Church; and may the Lord grant His Beatitude, together with his clergy and flock, long-suffering patience, a multitude of His mercies, blessings, and consolation in the tribulation that now befalls the faithful of Christ in the Ukrainian land. Amen.



Eastern American Diocese | Russian Orthodox Church Outside Russia