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The Department for the External Church Relations of the UOC (MP) ommented on the anniversary of Greek Catholic Lviv Pseudo Council of 1946
11 March 2016, 14:13 | Interchurch relations | 15 | | Code for Blog | |
The Department for the External Church Relations of the UOC (MP) commented on the anniversary of Greek Catholic Lviv Pseudo Council of 1946 that was aimed at eliminating the UGCC. This commentary has already provoked discussions in the social networks.
In particular, the UOC (MP) believes that 70 years ago a part of the Uniates came under the mantle of the Russian Patriarchentirely of their own free will. However, the main reason of liquidation of the UGCC, according to the Orthodox clergymen of the Moscow Patriarchate, was “overt cooperation of this religious denomination with the Nazi occupying forces and their henchmen in Western Ukraine.”
RISU publishes the full commentary of the DECR UOC (MP):
“Information and Education Department of the UOC publishes the commentary of the Department for External Church Relations of the UOC on Lviv Church Council of 1946.
Nowadays, the Orthodox and Greek Catholics in Ukraine have a complicated relationship due to various tragic events that took place in history.
First of all, one should remember the Union of Brest of 1596, as a result of which a part of Orthodox believers was forcibly incorporated into the Catholic Church under the pressure of the Polish government, which entailed further formation of the Uniate Church, now called the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church (UGCC). One should also mention the Union ofUzhgorod, 1646, as a result of which in Transcarpathiathe Orthodox were also forced to convert to Catholicism under the terms of Brest Union, again under pressure exerted by the Catholic Hungarian authorities.
These violent actions provoked strong opposition of the Orthodox population, which has been described in detail in the historical literature. For these reasons, the Cossack uprisings of XVI-XVII centuries, in addition to political and national liberation ideological orientation, were also held under slogans of defense of the Orthodox faith, which has been reflected, in particular, in the works of Ukrainian writers and poets, including Shevchenko. These events led to the formation of the hostile attitude to the Greek Catholics in the consciousness of the Orthodox Ukrainian people.
On March 8-10, 2016 marks the 70th anniversary of Lviv Council, which adopted the decision on the cancellation of the Union of Brest of 1596 and the return of Greek Catholics in western Ukraine into the (then) Russian Orthodox Church. Then a part of the Uniate clergy and believers sincerely returned to the Orthodox faith. A proof of this is not only historical documents, including on the activity of Archpriest of HavryiylKostelnyk that long before the Lviv Council was sympathetic to Orthodoxy, but also the fact that today in Galicia there are about 900 parishes that refused to return to Uniatismeven after the legalization of the UGCC. However, we must recognize the fact that some of the Uniate clergymen and faithful did not accept the decisions of Lviv Council. In 1990 started the revival of the UGCC, which came out of the underground with malice and articulated anti-orthodox aggression.
Today, in the information field the attempts are being made to denigrate the deeds of Lviv Council of 1946, which is often represented as an act of atheistic regime aimed at the elimination of the Greek Catholics in Galicia with the aid of the Orthodox. However, it is impossible to assess the Council’s activity based only on the facts of persecution of the Greek Catholics, without mentioning the sufferings of the Orthodox Church under the Soviet regime, numerous instances of torture of Orthodox clergymen and faithful. One cannot provide an assessment of the Council without mentioning a decade of the suffering of Orthodox population of Ukraine from the Uniate policy, starting with the Union of Brest 1596. In addition, the main reason for the liquidation of the UGCC by the punitive organs of the Soviet Union was the overt cooperation of this religious denomination with the Nazi occupying forces and their henchmen in Western Ukraine.
We believe that today in their relations Orthodox and Greek Catholics should not think of finding fault with each other, but of developing the concept of peaceful coexistence in a united Ukraine as well as of cooperation in all areas where appropriate. All the historical facts of pain on both sides should be studied in detail and openly discussed for the sake of mutual understanding and establishing constructive relations.”
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