The UOC-MP threatens and says that “Epiphanius does not have permission to serve in the Lavra”: what is known
Representatives of the metropolitan patriarchate believe that they can legally use the temples on the territory of the Lavra until the end of the war. They want to celebrate Christmas.
This was stated in the information and educational department of the UOC-MP. They noted that the unilateral interruption of the lease agreement by the leadership of the Kiev-Pechersk Lavra Reserve was illegal.
The UOC-MP also said that due to the allegedly illegal actions of the leadership of the reserve, which, according to them, does not allow the clergy and believers of the UOC-MP to visit churches on Christmas, they filed a lawsuit. They note that they have the right to use the Assumption Cathedral and the refectory of the temple in accordance with the agreements of 2016.
Accused of infringement
The Moscow Patriarchate said that, in accordance with Decree No. 634 “On the specifics of the lease of state and communal property during martial law,” they have the right to stay on the territory of the reserve until the end of martial law and for 4 months from the date of termination or cancellation of martial law. In addition, they believe that even if the reserve did not want to extend the agreement, it had to inform about it 30 days before the expiration date of the contracts.
If the Ministry of Culture and the reserve have a different position, then they can prove their case in court, and before that, the use of the Monastery of the Holy Dormition Kiev-Pechersk Lavra by the Assumption Cathedral and the Refectory Church is lawful and legal, – wrote in the UOC-MP.
They said that the management specially hung chains with locks on the doors. According to the Moscow Patriarchate, the actions of the reserve's leadership violate the fundamental rights and freedoms of believers in Ukraine.
What did Moscow priests call for?
The UOC-MP appealed to the administration of the Lavra Reserve. They hope that the rector of the Orthodox Church of Ukraine, Metropolitan Epiphanius, who wants to hold a divine service on January 7, will not be allowed into the territory of the reserve.
The Moscow Patriarchate noted that the leadership of the national reserve did not confirm the legal grounds for using the premises of the OCU Lavra. Consequently, they hope that no one “will allow arbitrariness in the protected museum territory.”
“Otherwise, the leadership itself will be held criminally liable for possible losses associated with the use of … an architectural monument of the 12th century, which is the Assumption Cathedral of the Lavra,” the UOC-MP threatens.