Fear and politics. The response to the autocephaly of the

Страх и большая политика. Реакция на автокефалию

How in the world reacted and commented on the decision on granting the Orthodox Church in Ukraine autocephaly.

The decision of the Ecumenical Patriarchate are ready to grant the autocephaly of the Orthodox Church in Ukraine has caused a lot of controversy and discussion worldwide.

Some support this decision, others protesting, others talk about politics.

Correspondent.netgathered reaction on the support of Ukrainian autocephaly.


Special representative of US state Department on Ukraine Kurt Volker said the United States fully supported the desire of Ukrainians to have their own single national Church.

Walker said the decision of Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew on the support of the autocephaly of the Ukrainian Church religious, not political.

“From the American point of view, the only thing we can say that we believe in the principle of religious freedom. Our country is based on it, and therefore we support the desire of all people to practice their religion the way they want, and have the freedom and recognition and to do it peacefully,” said the special representative of the United States.

Walker hopes that there will be protests and violent actions organized after this decision. In his opinion, it would be a tragedy.

State Department special envoy also commented on the warning, representatives of the ROC that the independence of the Ukrainian Church will lead to violence in Ukraine.

“It’s a tragedy that you have religious leaders who are talking about resorting to violence. It will be a terrible accident, and we certainly don’t want to see it,” said Walker.


In Moscow actions Bartholomew is called the “lawless act”. Promise to meet in Minsk next Monday, when there will be a meeting of the Holy Synod of the Russian Orthodox Church.

After the decision on autocephaly Russia is ready to “protect” Russian speakers in Ukraine, said the press Secretary of the Russian President, Dmitry Peskov.

However, he said that the secular authorities in Russia will not interfere in inter-Church dialogue.

“Christianity is the one religion that dominates in Russia, of course, everything that happens in the world of Orthodoxy, is the subject of increased attention from the state, but on state intervention in the processes of speech can not go”, – said Peskov.

He also noted that Russia is ready “political and diplomatic means” to protect the Orthodox Russians in Ukraine if will be against them any provocation.

“If developments will include in the direction of illegal actions, of course, as Russia everywhere to protect Russian interests and Russian speakers as well and this has been reiterated Putin, Russia protects the interests of the Orthodox. It is absolutely reasonable and understandable position,” – said the speaker of the Kremlin.

Step with political overtones – Financial Times

“This is a step with political overtones made in spite of severe warnings from the lips of Moscow”, write the journalists of the Financial Times.

They call the decision of the Ecumenical Patriarch – “the victory of Ukraine in the broader struggle against Russia, which affects the annexation by Moscow of Crimea in 2014 and its continued support of separatists fighting against Kiev in the East of the country.”

The President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko “vigorously lobbied for the recognition of the Church, relying on the fact that this achievement can enhance his chances for re-election in 2019”, the authors note.

The leader of the Russian Orthodox Church Patriarch Kirill in September threatened that his Church would break ties with the Patriarchate of Constantinople, if he recognizes independent Ukrainian Church. According to the authors, the gap between Moscow to Istanbul would be a phenomenon equivalent to the split into Orthodoxy and Catholicism in 1054.

“The decision to recognize the Ukrainian Church is perceived and as a direct result of Russia’s invasion of Crimea in 2014 and its role in the war in the East of the country, which lasts for four years, and as an example of how aggressive Putin’s foreign policy has weakened the global reputation of Russia, even in the spiritual realm. Analysts warn about the risk of religious conflict during the maturing process, during which the Ukrainian parishes have to decide if they would join the newly independent Ukrainian Orthodox Church or will remain faithful of the Russian Orthodox Church”, – is spoken in article.

Ukrainian security services fear that Russia will try to stir discord in the process, the newspaper writes.

A little of what it means for believers – The Washington Post

In terms of everyday life, the autocephaly of the Ukrainian Church will be of little consequence to believers, but to the Ukrainian political leaders, she will mark an important symbolic break with Russia, journalists write for The Washington Post .

“Forgive my enthusiasm, but it really is about Russia’s control over the minds and souls of the Ukrainian people”, – leads edition of the words of people’s Deputy Viktor yelensky.

“Moscow puts Ukraine as the aggressor, and the pursuit of autocephaly portrays as an attack. But for the Ukrainians this defense,” said associate Professor of history and Russian and East European studies Wesleyan University (USA) Victoria Smolkin.

“It really undermines the whole of Russia is its role in the world or, so to speak, marketing promotion,” – said the Director of the Centre for Orthodox studies at Fordham University (USA) George Demacopoulos.

“All this has real geopolitical consequences, he added. Especially when there is such a figure as Putin, who manages to hide the pain of his people for this demonstration of international power”.

Peaceful coexistence will not be – Tageszeitung

“Christian Orthodox Church to which around the world belong to 300 million believers, stand before the split, writes the German newspaper Tageszeitung .

Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the Moscow Patriarchate is the only canonical of the three existing in Ukraine the Orthodox churches that is recognized by the Patriarchate of Constantinople, journalists said. Now, however, Constantinople must acknowledge the two other Ukrainian Orthodox churches.

“As an Orthodox Christian, I can only go to the Church of the Moscow Patriarchate, because the others are not recognized by Orthodox churches. But as a conscious citizen of my country, I can’t go to the Church of the Moscow Patriarchate because the Moscow Patriarchate is a very Pro-Moscow,” leads Tageszeitung words Ukrainian radiojournalists Alina Belabre.

For the peaceful coexistence of different recognized by the Constantinople Orthodox churches as imagine this Belabre, is an example. In Estonia coexist Orthodox Church of the Moscow Patriarchate and the Church of the Patriarchate of Constantinople. However, much suggests that in Ukraine it is not so, say the journalists.

“For Ukrainian politics the question of the one Church, which would deprive significance of the Orthodox Church of the Moscow Patriarchate, is vital, is the author of the article. In April, speaking before the Ukrainian Parliament, Poroshenko said that the creation of a single Orthodox Church is not a matter of religion, but an instrument of struggle in a hybrid war with Russia.”

Russia in turn has warned that the recognition of both Ukrainian Orthodox churches of Constantinople could have serious consequences and lead to bloodshed.

Live in fear – Le Figaro

French newspaper published a report from the city and the village Kotiuzhyny.

In Katugino the transfer of St. Stephen’s Church of Kiev Patriarchate of Moscow led to conflict. Being neighbours, the believers of the two camps are afraid to meet each other, the newspaper writes. “We are treated as enemies of Ukraine and the separatists accuse us that we support Putin, but I don’t do politics. God especially does not have anything to do with this. I’m content only to those that pray,” lead words of the pensioner Irina, who goes to Church, the UOC-MP, though not speak at home in Russian.

In Lviv, the Church of the Holy great Martyr George Pobedonostsa fear that their Church will suffer the same fate.