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    “Schism” term introduced by Moscow Patriarchate – expert

    The Moscow state keeps its hand firmly on the pulse of the church. Oleksandr Sagan, PhD, Professor, head of the Department of religious studies at the Institute of Philosophy of the National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine, stated this during an interview.

    “The Moscow Patriarchate is part of a large state apparatus. They don’t even hide it. Few people are aware that from 1995 to 1996, the Moscow Patriarchate signed cooperation agreements with all law enforcement agencies without exception. They work closely with intelligence, FSB, and all these other bodies. Their activities are adjusted to these agencies. However, the world is already tired of the Moscow patriarchate,” says Sagan.

    He noted that the term “schism” in the church was introduced by the Moscow Patriarchate.

    “Actually, according to the canon, there was an institutional separation. That is, there was an autocephalous church that had its own diaspora. It merged with a part of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of Ukraine. Filaret simply separated, and the terminology was simply imposed. If we look at 2018, Constantinople restored its jurisdiction in Ukraine. This certifies that there are no violations. In fact, in the 1990s, the UOC of the Kyiv Patriarchate (KP) began to grow rapidly. In order to counter this, the concept of canonical territory was introduced. Ukraine is considered the canonical territory of the Moscow Church. The UOC KP is not recognized, but it is canonical. After all, no canons were violated. Therefore, claims of a schism are manipulations. After all, there was an institutional separation,” the expert emphasizes.

    According to him, the process of recognizing churches in Ukraine continues. However, the problem with autocephaly is very old.

    “The first autocephalies were confirmed by ecumenical councils. The first five autocephalies are Constantinople, Alexandria, Antioch, Jerusalem, and the Church of Cyprus. Later, it was Constantinople that issued the Tomos of autocephaly. Moscow wants to reduce the role of Constantinople in ecumenical Orthodoxy. However, today the method of obtaining autocephaly remains in place,” sums up the expert.

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