Monday, May 23, 2022

    OCU spokesman: Bartholomew was leaving Ukraine inspired

    Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew flew out of Ukraine very inspired by what he saw and heard in Ukraine, and all the stunts by the ROCinU were perceived as Moscow’s antics.

    That’s according to Archbishop Yevstratiy (Zorya), a spokesman for the OCU.

    “The patriarch was leaving Ukraine very inspired. That’s because the personal experience of communication, the things he saw and heard, only confirmed that the decisions made were correct and no persuasion or intimidation on the part of Moscow would change anything. Both the society and the state took the visit very positively. And all propaganda stunts by the pro-Russian church were unequivocally seen as Moscow’s tantrum fits. So the result is exactly the opposite of what was expected by the Moscow Patriarchate,” Archbishop Yevstratiy wrote on Facebook.

    “Anti-church stunts by the Moscow Patriarchate in Ukraine and their Myriany NGO looked sorry. As a communist party meeting in Brezhnev’s late days. What else can we expect from a cheap crowd gathered for UAH 150 per day?” the spokesman for the OCU added.

    According to Archbishop Yevstratiy, the opponents of the visit could not come up with anything unique so their efforts looked like a parody of the actual protests of Orthodox Ukrainians against the visits of Moscow Patriarchs Alexy and Kirill.

    A spokesman for the OCU has also commented on a fake news spin launched by the ROCinU claiming they have allegedly prevented Bartholomew from partaking in an interfaith prayer for Ukraine.

    “In order to somehow justify their helplessness, the leaders of the Moscow Patriarchate in Ukraine hastened to declare Patriarch’s absence at the ‘Prayer for Ukraine’ in St. Sophia as their ‘victory.’ However,

    • The patriarch met with the members of the Council of Churches the day before and talked with them very warmly and sincerely. In fact, it was only the MP representatives who didn’t come. They did not even attend the meeting of the Council with Pope John Paul II;
    • The Patriarch has already prayed for Ukraine in St. Sophia, with thousands of OCU faithful, back on Sunday, co-leading the liturgy with the OCU Metropolitan. He precisely prayed. Because, unlike Metropolitan Onufriy, he didn’t come just to read out some ritual greetings. So why did the Patriarch have to go to Sofia again? Only as a guest?
    • Especially since at the same time, he had a meeting in the Cabinet with Prime Minister Shmyhal, who also had a busy schedule and only that slot was open. And the ‘Prayer for Ukraine’ itself was an internal event where there were no foreign guests present. Therefore, this is not a “victory” of the MP, but their attempt to keep a good face in a bad game,” said Archbishop Yevstratiy.

    He also noted that the ROCinU didn’t follow up on own promises.

    “Vowing not to go places the Patriarch will be visiting, the leaders of the Moscow Patriarchate failed to deliver on their promise. That’s because they were there, on the podium at the parade, as was the Patriarch. The situation became even more comical when those MP leaders humbly waited for the Patriarch to leave the presidential reception – before actually joining the event,” wrote the OCU spokesman.