Ukrainian Orthodox Church Breaks Away from Russian Influence (Video)

Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I, center, signs the "Tomos" decree of autocephaly for the Ukrainian church as Metropolitan Epiphanius, center right, the head of the independent Ukrainian Orthodox Church looks on during the ceremony at the Patriarchal Church of St. George in Istanbul, Saturday, Jan. 5, 2019. The Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople has signed a decree of independence for the Orthodox Church of Ukraine. (AP Photo/Emrah Gurel)

An independent Ukrainian Orthodox church was created at a signing ceremony in Turkey on Saturday, formalizing a split with the Russian church it had been tied to since 1686.

The Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople, Bartholomew I, signed the “Tomos” in Istanbul in front of clerics and Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko, forming the Orthodox Church of Ukraine.

It forces Ukrainian clerics to pick sides between the Moscow-backed Ukrainian churches and the new church as fighting persists in eastern Ukraine between government forces and Russia-backed rebels.

Posted by Ecumenical Patriarchate on Saturday, January 5, 2019

“The pious Ukrainian people have awaited this blessed day for seven entire centuries,” Bartholomew I said in his address.

The patriarch, considered “first among equals” in Orthodox Christianity, said Ukrainians could now enjoy “the sacred gift of emancipation, independence and self-governance, becoming free from every external reliance and intervention.”

Poroshenko thanked Bartholomew I “for the courage to make this historic decision” and said that “among the 15 stars of the Orthodox churches of the world a Ukrainian star has appeared,” referring to the updated number of churches that don’t answer to an external authority.

Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko, top left, as Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I, right back to a camera, listens to him during a meeting to sign “Tomos” decree of autocephaly for Ukrainian church at the Patriarchal Church of St. George in Istanbul, Saturday, Jan. 5, 2019. The Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople has signed a decree of independence for the Orthodox Church of Ukraine. (AP Photo/Emrah Gurel)

Last month, Ukrainian Orthodox leaders approved the creation of a new, unified church split from the Moscow Patriarchate and elected 39-year-old Metropolitan Epiphanius I to lead it.

Bartholomew I’s decision in October to grant the Ukrainian church autocephaly, or independence, infuriated Moscow and the Russian church severed ties with Istanbul, the center of the Orthodox world.

Kiev has been pushing for a church free from Moscow’s influence, which intensified after Russia’s 2014 annexation of Crimea and amid the ongoing conflict in eastern Ukraine.

Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, second from left, his wife Emine Erdogan, left, Ukraine’s President Petro Poroshenko and his wife Maryna Proshenko pose for a photo before a meeting, in Istanbul, Saturday, Jan. 5, 2019. Poroshenko will attend a ceremony with the new primate of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church, Metropolitan Epiphany, during which Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I will sign “Tomos” decree of autocephaly for Ukrainian church. (Presidential Press Service/Pool Photo via AP)

Poroshenko, president since 2014, has pushed for the creation of the church as he campaigns for the March 31 elections. Though the church is not formally part of the state, it is closely tied. Recent opinion polls suggest he is in second or third place in the race.

Poroshenko met with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan before the ceremony.

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By AYSE WIETING and ZEYNEP BILGINSOY , Associated Press

Associated Press writers Yuras Karmanau in Minsk, Belarus and Jim Heintz in Moscow contributed.

An Orthodox priest holds a copy of a Bible at the Patriarchal Church of St. George prior to a meeting of Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I, Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko, and Metropolitan Epiphanius, the head of the independent Ukrainian Orthodox Church, in Istanbul, Turkey, Saturday, Jan. 5, 2019. (AP Photo/Emrah Gurel)
Metropolitan Epiphanius, the head of the independent Ukrainian Orthodox Church, center, and Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I greet each other as Ukraine’s President Petro Poroshenko, right, looks on during a meeting to sign “Tomos” decree of autocephaly for Ukrainian church at the Patriarchal Church of St. George in Istanbul, Turkey, Saturday, Jan. 5, 2019. (Mykhailo Markiv, Ukrainian Presidential Press Service/Pool Photo via AP)
Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I, left, talks to Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko’s wife Maryna, right, as Poroshenko looks on, center, during a meeting to sign “Tomos” decree of autocephaly for Ukrainian church at the Patriarchal Church of St. George in Istanbul, Turkey, Saturday, Jan. 5, 2019. (Mykhailo Markiv, Ukrainian Presidential Press Service/Pool Photo via AP)
Metropolitan Epiphanius, the head of the independent Ukrainian Orthodox Church, left, Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I, center, and Ukraine’s President Petro Poroshenko during a meeting prior to sign “Tomos” decree of autocephaly for Ukrainian church at the Patriarchal Church of St. George in Istanbul, Turkey, Saturday, Jan. 5, 2019. (Mykola Lazarenko, Ukrainian Presidential Press Service/Pool Photo via AP)
Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I, center, Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko, left, and Metropolitan Epiphanius, the head of the independent Ukrainian Orthodox Church pose for a photo during their meeting to sign “Tomos” decree of autocephaly for Ukrainian church at the Patriarchal Church of St. George in Istanbul, Saturday, Jan. 5, 2019. The Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople has signed a decree of independence for the Orthodox Church of Ukraine. (AP Photo/Emrah Gurel)
Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I, center, Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko, left, and Metropolitan Epiphanius, the head of the independent Ukrainian Orthodox Church pose for a photo after their meeting to sign “Tomos” decree of autocephaly for Ukrainian church at the Patriarchal Church of St. George in Istanbul, Saturday, Jan. 5, 2019. The Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople has signed a decree of independence for the Orthodox Church of Ukraine. (AP Photo/Emrah Gurel)
Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I, center, Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko, left of him, and Metropolitan Epiphanius, the head of the independent Ukrainian Orthodox Church, right of him, pose for a photo after their meeting to sign “Tomos” decree of autocephaly for Ukrainian church at the Patriarchal Church of St. George in Istanbul, Saturday, Jan. 5, 2019. The Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople has signed a decree of independence for the Orthodox Church of Ukraine. (AP Photo/Emrah Gurel)
Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko, top left, as Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I, right back to a camera, listens to him during a meeting to sign “Tomos” decree of autocephaly for Ukrainian church at the Patriarchal Church of St. George in Istanbul, Saturday, Jan. 5, 2019. The Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople has signed a decree of independence for the Orthodox Church of Ukraine. (AP Photo/Emrah Gurel)
Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I, center left, Metropolitan Epiphanius, the head of the independent Ukrainian Orthodox Church, center right, and Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko, top right, attend the ceremony of signing the “Tomos” decree of autocephaly for the Ukrainian church at the Patriarchal Church of St. George in Istanbul, Saturday, Jan. 5, 2019. The Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople has signed a decree of independence for the Orthodox Church of Ukraine. (AP Photo/Emrah Gurel)
Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I, center left, Metropolitan Epiphanius, the head of the independent Ukrainian Orthodox Church, center right, Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko, top right, attend the ceremony of signing the “Tomos” decree of autocephaly for the Ukrainian church at the Patriarchal Church of St. George in Istanbul, Saturday, Jan. 5, 2019. The Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople has signed a decree of independence for the Orthodox Church of Ukraine. (AP Photo/Emrah Gurel)
Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko, center, and his wife Maryna walk after signing “Tomos” decree of autocephaly for Ukrainian church at the Patriarchal Church of St. George in Istanbul, Saturday, Jan. 5, 2019. The Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople has signed a decree of independence for the Orthodox Church of Ukraine. (AP Photo/Emrah Gurel)

4 Comments

  1. This is not a church, it is a coven spawned of Satan seeking to divide the true Church. Not one other Orthodox Church recognizes this new coven, none have even offered congratulations. The true canonical Orthodox Church of Ukraine remains the one led by Metropolitan Onuphry. May dark demons torment Bartholomew’s schismatic soul in this world and the next. ANAXIOS!!

    1. Bartholomew and the Ukrainian Metropolitan ….do not even hide their treason …and surrender of the sovereignty of the Orthodox Church in…. inviting Neo Nazi Oligark Poroshenko to the Orthodox Church affairs relative to a change in church jurisdiction! Then Porosenko ..uses the occasion to meet with another genocidal criminal tyrant like him Edrogan…and a sponsor of Sunni Muslim religious jihadist who have killed thousands of Orthodox Christians thru out Iraq, and Syria!

      Bartholomew …has created a religious and political circus …on behalf of Porshenko …to demonstrate that he represents the interests of the Ukrainian people by using the Ukrainian Orthodox Church as an example of the dangers of Russia! This is the same guy …who orders naval vessels into the territorial waters of Russia ..to instigate another incident…to again demonstrate why the people fo the Ukraine need him!

      He has an approval rating of 14%…AND SHORT OF FIXING THE ELECTION IN MARCH WITH THE UNITED STATES …HE WILL BE REMOVED!

      As a Greek Orthodox Christian …it is disgusting to watch TNH promote Bartholomew as” the Man of the Year” ..for complying with the Anglo white supremacist of the United State Government and their Greek Secret Society of Ahepa Mason …who for the Glory of America want to to divide the Orthodox Church and promote the anti Russian narratives!

      TNH has again demonstrated that they are nothing more than corrupt journalistic prostitutes and traitors to Greek Americans,..like Bartholomew…who also promoted Democratic Ahepa member Robert Menendez for the Senate Seat of New Jersey….who was indicted for 18 counts of bribery , fraud, and taking gifts from a Jewish Doctor…which included providing him with under age Teenage Prostitutes for his pleasure in the Dominican Republic. He was found guilty of thses offenses by the Congress of the United States !

      While , TNH…continues to destroy the reputation of Archbishop Demetrios with unproven allegations and innuendos…they remain silent to the blatant collaboration between Bartholomew ..and the political representatives of the Ukraine and U.S . government.to literally make him …subject to Excomunication from the entire Orthodox Church! ]

      We cannot have a governor of the United States running our church…who spits in our face …by allowing the sanctity of the Orthodox Church to be used as a propaganda tool to promote Neo Nazi leaders around the world …and to parade the beneficiaries of theis corrupt actions thru the halls of our church …like conquering heroes to their degenerate supporters!

      Every one should write to thei archbishop of North America and your metropolitan to begin an investigation into the collusion of the Ukrainian government with Bartholomew and the Metropolitan fo the Unkrainian Orthodox Church!

      The evidence is overwhelming…because in this case …it is already open and available…including the testimony of the U.S ambassador to Greece…who confessed that it was in the Interests of the United States to divide the church…because of alleged use of the Ukranian church to threaten the democracy of the Ukraine!

      I will not surrender my belief in Christ and the original church of Christ and renounce my stewardship iin my church …because that is what they want!

      importantly, we must stick together …and do what we do every Sunday…worship our lord and Savior as we were taught in the Orthodox church ….and frankly, Bartholomew … has been officially removed from the church and hope he lives forever…with his fellow mobsters in Turkey!…

  2. How disgusting …watching a Neo Nazi president and 900,000,000 dollar oligark… walking hand and hand with the traitors of the Orthodox Church..like Bartholomew …who also betrayed the Orthodox Christians of Syria…who demanded that Porchenko’s sponsors …the United States stop arming and recruiting Sunni Muslim religous terrorist and fanatics …who were killing Orthodox Christians thruout Syria!

    Bartholomew and his cabal remained silent to their efforts…..and the Russian Orthodox Soldiers and Pilot..who have defeated those animals…and for the first time since the war in Syria started …their are two large Christmas trees in the Middle of Damascus and Allepo….and Orthodox Christians are celebrating Christas in the streets of those towns!

    While Bartolomew blessed the Neo Nazi of the Ukraine to isolate the Ukrainian Orthodox Church…the Russian Orthodox Church…was blessing the Russian Orthodox pilots and soldiers of Russia ….to come to the aid of Orthodox Christians in Syria!

    Fear not Michael …Mr. Porchenko may think that his departure in March with a less than 14 % approval rating will be saved by infringing on the water rights of Russia , and spliitng the Ukrainian Orthodox Church…he is sadly mistaken!

    For both Bartholomew and Porchenko…their is an area of the Ukraine …called Eastern Ukraine …which also separated from the Ukraine …when Porchenko and the U.S overthrew their elected leader….and remain at war with Porchenko! They also represent a condideral part of the Ukraine ..make up of ethnic orthodox russian..just like Crimea…who will never recognize the Ukrainian Orthodox as molded by Bartolomew, Porchenko and the state department of the rogue government of America …who has just been ordered out of Iraq by the government of Iraq…for their interference in their new government …and their non compliance in not being blackmailed to buy their oil and gas from one of the many enemies of America …Iran!

    Can you imagine this …a country who is guilty of waging wars to take control of the economic and political sovereignty of the world …..actually in broad daylight demonstrates why they wish to control the economic sovereignty of countries by threatening countries with economic warfare …if the do not join their personal wars aganst their created enemies!

    Bartholomew …has missed out …that the empire he serves is losing its grip…and he is going to be on the losing end…and which it has already begun ..with faithful like me …who no longer recognize him as the leader of our church…merely a lost soul and traitor to his real master!

  3. Inquiring minds want to know……did Metropolitan Epiphanios fly right back to Ukraine after the signing so he could celebrate the feast of the Nativity according to the old calendar like the rest of the Ukrainians, or did he stay at the Patriarchate?

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