02-12-2014

Ministry of Culture setup a working group to resolve inter-church conflicts

minkultury.jpgThe working group was initiated and designed to solve ambiguous situations that arise in the relationship is between the Ukrainian Orthodox Church (Moscow Patriarchate) and the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the Kyivan Patriarchate.

Deputy director of the Department for Religions and Nationalities to the Ministry of Culture Andriy Yurash was reported as saying this by the Institute for Religious Freedom.

The first meeting of the Working Group on the settlement of current interchurch conflicts was held at the Ministry of Culture on November 26, 2014.

“Presently, certain situationsin interfaith relations that tend to exacerbate should be monitored at a state level,” said Deputy Minister of Culture Oleksandr Zhuravchak.

The participants discussed the results of monitoring of the instances of interchurch controversy based on the information made available to regional administrations. Particular conflict cases in Rivne and Khmelnytsky regions and their causes were also discussed in detail.

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“The situation is very ambiguous and cannot be approached in one plane. There are specific issues related to the implementation of the law on freedom of conscience, i.e. changes in jurisdictional affiliation of the communities, and also a range of legal issues and personal problems. But it is a general political context that complicates the situation and cannot be disregarded,” said Andriy Yurash.

Representatives of Orthodox churches who attended the meeting were unanimous about the necessity to eliminate confrontational rhetoric from official documents. They positively assessed the establishment of the Working Group as a platform for discussion of current issues of interfaith relations and agreed that elimination of tension in interchurch relations is beneficial for society.

Participating in the meeting were

UOC (MP) representatives:

Chair of the Legal Department of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church Archpriest Oleksandr Bakhov;

Vicar of the Kyiv Metropolis Bishop Mykolai (Poshtovyy) of Vasylkivof the Ukrainian Orthodox Church;

UOC KP:

Archbishop Ilarion (Protsyk) of Rivne and Ostroh, head of the UOC-KP (Protsyk);

Archbishop Yevstratiy (Zorya) of Chernihiv and Nizhyn, Secretary of the Holy Synod of the UOC-KP;

representatives of the Ministry of Culture of Ukraine:

Deputy Minister of Culture Oleksandr Zhuravchak;

Deputy Director the Department for Religions and Nationalities Andriy Yurash;

and other Ministry officials.

experts:

Chairman of the NGO "Institute for Religious Freedom" Oleksandr Zaets;

MP of Ukraine Viktor Yelenskyy;

Head of the Department for EthnonationalPolicies, Religion and Ukrainians Abroadto the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine Yuriy Reshetnikov.

With a purpose of continuous processing of proposals and preparation of these meetings it was decided to set up a small working group for the settlement of inter-church conflicts.

www.risu.org.ua

The items contained in the Religious Information Service of Ukraine may be used, in part or in their entirety, by quoting the source.