Ukraine: Parliament passes bill on the name of Moscow Patriarchate
On December 20, 2018, the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine adopted bill number 5309, voted for by 240 MPs. MPs from the Opposition Bloc voted against it. Speaker of the Parliament Andriy Parubiy emphasizes that the bill was passed at the personal request of Patriarch Emeritus Filaret. The bill sponsored by MP Alexander Bryhintsev and a number of other MPs suggests amending the standard law entitled On Freedom of Conscience and Religious Organizations so that a religious organization whose center is in the aggressor country shall specify in its title the full statute name of its religious center. In addition, such a religious organization is prohibited from conducting a chaplaincy service in military organizations of Ukraine.
Many analysts point out that the bill will apply not only to the Ukrainian Orthodox Church-Moscow Patriarchate, but also to other Orthodox and Old Believer Churches that are subordinate to Russian religious centers. A year ago, the Council of the Russian Orthodox Church tried to protect the UOC-MP from the effect of this regulation, having registered in the Charter that the governing center of the UOC (MP) is located in Kyiv. Deputy Chairman of the Committee on Culture and Spirituality, religious scholar, MP Viktor Yelensky noted in his speech that the Committee proposes to adopt the law as a whole.
As reported, today the faithful of the UOC-MP have rallied against the above-mentioned bills. This is not for the first time that representatives of this Church are opposed to parliamentary innovations. RISU has already reported about protests of the UOC-MP faithful against “church bills.” (Quelle: www.risu.org.ua, 20. Dezember 2018)