The brief synopsis in English of the statement of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church (UOC) under His Beatitude, Met. Onuphy, is well worth a read.
In it, the reader will note vital themes that have been echoed in my blog and by others.
The divisive, one may even say diabolical, actions of the EP in Ukraine are an attack on the very foundations of the Church of Christ.
Also, it is of the utmost importance to understand that the crisis is not one of “administration.” It is not just a spat between Moscow and Constantinople. Such a view is a false narrative. Moreover, such a narrative fails to take into account that the Church in Ukraine is an Autonomous Church.
The root issues have to deal with proper ecclesiology. This is why the actions of the EP in Ukraine can be called heretical. The EP has violated the spiritual unity of the Church and has taken to itself a position which is totally foreign to true Orthodoxy, the claim of being “first without equals.”
Another point of extreme pertinence is that the EP, together with those who have “recognized” the schismatics in Ukraine, are serving and communing with those who have no Christian validity, no apostolic succession. They have also placed schismatics over and above the canonical Church. Such actions are a grave violence against the unity of the Church, the Body of Christ.
The “sacraments” performed by the schismatics in Ukraine are completely devoid of grace. The EP and its supporters are fellowshipping in gracelessness.
The UOC statement clearly says that such communion with graceless schismatics is “blasphemy and a desecration of the Eucharist.” A very true statement.
To break Eucharistic communion with those in fellowship with the corrupt schismatics is indeed a protection of the Eucharist and a guarding of the true Unity of the Church. Also, the breaking of communion protects the healthy members from the corruption and defilement that is being injected in other members, which will eventually lead to death unless repentance is applied. This section of the statement is worth repeating in full here –
In fact, we defend the purity of the canonical tradition of the Church and protect the Church from blasphemy. Otherwise, if persons who do not have canonical ordinations are admitted to the priesthood, if the schism is declared by the Church, and the real Church of Christ is ignored or called a schism, then there is a danger of the substitution of the Church. In addition, such anti-Church actions blur the line between the Church and schism. As a result, a new “Church” is created, founded by people, instead of the one that our Lord Jesus Christ founded, having acquired it for Himself by His own Blood (cf. Acts. 20:28).
As I have pointed out numerous times, the actions of the EP are establishing a “new” church. Yet, this “church” is not founded upon our Lord Jesus Christ, rather it is being founded upon novel and innovative ideologies which are foreign to the true spirit of Orthodoxy. It is also the machinations of godless secular powers.
The Synod points out that much of the motivation for “recognizing” the schismatics comes not from true Christian concerns but rather from secular geopolitical agendas.
The faithful are called to stay faithful to Christ the Lord and fear not. The Lord will bring His Church through even these turbulent times.
Such pertinent and vital spiritual principles should be taken to heart by faithful Orthodox in America.
A starting point may be to at least cease Eucharistic communion with what is called the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of America EP. This group has been integral to the support of the schismatics in Ukraine. A hierarch of said group, Daniel, was a primary mover in the “recognition” of the schismatics in Ukraine.
This group is responsible for the destruction of Orthodoxy in their homeland and the magnification of schism throughout the Orthodox world.
Since they are emphatically supporting and in communion with the apostate schismatics in Ukraine, Eucharistic communion should be broken with them. This at least would make some real act of support for the True Ukrainian Orthodox Church under Met. Onuphry. As of yet, such “support” has lamentably remained mostly in the sphere of words on the part of American jurisdictions.