Priests of the Vilnius-Lithuania Diocese of the Russian Orthodox Church, who were deposed by Moscow Patriarch Kirill, refused to read the “prayer for peace in Ukraine” sent from Moscow, which emphasized that the war had been unleashed by “foreign infidel forces.”
This was stated by the Russian theologian Andrei Kuraev, who spoke in an interview with Postimees.
“At least in Lithuania, the scandal started with the fact that Moscow sent them a prayer for peace in Ukraine. This prayer said that the war was unleashed by ‘foreign and infidel forces.’ It was a clear hint that the Anglo-Saxons are to blame for all the abominations, that they started the war,” Kuraev said.
According to the scholar, it was a clear wink from Patriarch Kirill to the Kremlin’s propaganda, and Lithuania understood it precisely that way.
“Lithuanian priests refused to read it — and that’s how their conflict with the local metropolitan began,” Kuraev emphasized.
On June 29, 2022, Metropolitan Innokenty signed the decrees on the desecration of Vitaly Motskus, Vitaly Dauparas, Georgy Ananiev, and Volodymyr Selyavka. A week earlier – on June 23 – Gintaras Sungaila was expelled from the sacred rank.
Early August, the decision to depose five former clerics of the Vilnius-Lithuania Diocese of the Russian Orthodox Church came into force – it was approved by Patriarch Kirill of Moscow, in accordance with the Provisions on the Church Court.