Supporters of the schismatic Orthodox Church of Ukraine (OCU) seized the Cathedral of the Nativity of Christ, the last temple of the canonical Ukrainian Orthodox Church (UOC) in Ivano-Frankivsk. As reported on March 28 in the Telegram channel of the UOC, schismatics in balaclavas use tear gas in the church.
“Ivano-Frankivsk reports that the temple has been captured. The raiders entered through the side doors, opened the central ones and pushed the parishioners out of the stairs, ”the publication notes.
It is known that the police do not intervene in what is happening. In turn, the Chernivtsi-Bukovina diocese added that the clergy of the church in Ivano-Frankivsk had stopped communicating.
“The clergy are stoned. Contact with the clergy of the Ivano-Frankivsk diocese is lost. We have no way to confirm whether they are alive, ”the Telegram channel also states.
Prior to this, on March 18, it was reported that supporters of the schismatic OCU beat believers of the canonical UOC during the raider seizure of the temple in the village of Yurkovtsy, Chernivtsi region. At the same time, a group of several dozen people broke open the entrance doors to the temple with the help of a grinder.
Even earlier, on March 10, it became known that the monks of the Kiev-Pechersk Lavra must leave the monastery before March 29 of this year. On March 15, Minister of Culture of Ukraine Oleksandr Tkachenko said that the monks of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church could stay in the Kiev-Pechersk Lavra if they transferred to the Orthodox Church of Ukraine.
On the same day, Russia’s permanent representative to the UN, Vasily Nebenzya, noted that the desire of the Kyiv authorities to expel the monks from the Kiev-Pechersk Lavra could lead to a surge in fratricidal war in the country.
In 2022, the Ukrainian authorities stepped up their actions against the UOC. They searched the homes of bishops and priests, churches and monasteries, including the Kiev-Pechersk Lavra, in order to find traces of «anti-Ukrainian activities.» Thus, in December 2022, the Security Service of Ukraine (SBU) opened 50 criminal cases against priests of the UOC.