Skip to comments.Russia Urges Ukrainian Clerics to Prevent Religious Conflict
Posted on 02/26/2014 6:38:04 PM PST by marshmallow
MOSCOW, February 26 (RIA Novosti) Russia called on clerics from major Orthodox branches in Ukraine Wednesday to prevent a religious conflict from escalating in the country.
Ukraine has three major Orthodox churches, but only one of them the Ukrainian Orthodox Church (Moscow Patriarchate) - is under the ecclesiastic jurisdiction of Russia and canonically recognized by the whole Eastern Orthodox communion.
The schism in Ukraines Orthodox community largely reflects the decades-long political split in the country, with pro-European west and pro-Russian east and south. The pro-Russian UOC-MP complained of provocations against its places of worship earlier this week.
"Russia is extremely concerned by violent behavior of extremists, who continue to impose their will and enforce their views because they are absolutely sure that it will be tolerated and their actions will go unpunished, the Russian Foreign Ministry said in a statement.
The UOC-MP has the allegiance of more than half of all Orthodox Christian communities in Ukraine. It is the largest religious body and controls two thirds of all religious organizations in the country.
The other two are the Ukrainian Orthodox Church (Kiev Patriarchate) and the Ukrainian Autocephalous Orthodox Church. The first has a strong presence in the capital Kiev and in central regions, while the second enjoys overwhelming support in the Western half of the country.
(Excerpt) Read more at en.ria.ru ...
The Orthodox Church would seem to have this fragmentation problem.