In the course of the meeting with representatives of Nationwide Council of Churches and Religious Organizations, President Petro Poroshenko emphasized the importance of establishing one local Orthodox church.
“In conditions of hybrid war, when Ukraine counters armed aggression of the neighboring country, our enemies are trying to use the religious factor in their own interests. Our unity is the main spiritual weapon of our victory. Attacks are first of all aimed at dividing our state from inside,” the Head of State noted. He added that notwithstanding the international support for Ukraine in its struggle against the aggressor, victory mainly depends on Ukrainians - their faith and efforts.
“Obviously, many believers find it difficult to put up with the current split of the Ukrainian Orthodoxy. I will not allow the interference of the state in the interchurch relations. However, you shouldn’t ignore the will of people. And of course you cannot let a foreign country interfere in this process,” the President stressed.
The President noted that public opinion polls showed that a growing number of Orthodox Citizens of Ukraine want to have one local autocephalous church “eucharistically and prayerfully united, and administratively independent from other states”.
The President once again stressed that the Ukrainian state preserved respect for freedom of conscience and religious feelings of Ukrainian citizens. "I am convinced that religious peace, mutual respect and church-state partnership are important achievements of our country. Ukraine is characterized by the church peace and harmony since independence. We should cherish and develop this achievement,” Petro Poroshenko said.