On the days of celebration of the 1030th anniversary of Christianization of Ukraine-Rus’, Petro Poroshenko met with delegation of the Ecumenical Patriarchate that arrived in Ukraine to participate in festivities on that occasion.
The Head of State expressed gratitude to His All Holiness Patriarch Bartholomew “for the constant care of the Mother Church about the believers of the Ukrainian nation that faces difficult times of aggression against our state on behalf of the Russian Federation, because of the illegal annexation of Crimea”.
Petro Poroshenko also expressed gratefulness for the position as regards the Ukrainian Church. “For the majority of Ukrainians the words of His All Holiness that Ukraine is not a canonical territory of the Russian Orthodox Church are very important. That the transfer of control to Moscow in the XVII century was held in a non-canonical way. And just as we do, His All Holiness considers exactly the Patriarchate of Constantinople our Mother Church,” the President emphasized.
The Head of State thanked the representatives of the Ecumenical Patriarchate for sharing the celebration of such an important date for Ukrainians together with our people. “Thank you for this prayer. Thank you for supporting us. Thank you that tomorrow we will celebrate this important anniversary jointly,” the Head of State said.
“We are confident that these prayers and these words help us unite people, help every Ukrainian to find its way to God,” Petro Poroshenko added.
The Head of State also thanked for such an important signal, blessing of Ukraine and support. The President noted that Ukraine is hopeful for the decision on granting the Tomos. “This is a historical moment for Ukraine and Ukrainian church to return to the fold of the Mother Church,” Petro Poroshenko stressed.
Representative of His All Holiness Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew Metropolitan of France Emmanuel emphasized that the delegation of the Patriarchate is here in Ukraine on behalf of His All Holiness. “It is with great pleasure that I convey to you the address of His All Holiness,” he said.
Bishop Ilarion of Edmonton and the Western Eparchy of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of Canada read the address of Patriarch Bartholomew who noted the importance of the baptism St. Vladimir from the First Holy See Church of Constantinople in the metropolis of Chersonesos. “The newly baptized nation came under the spiritual guidance, unrestrained care and church cover of the Church of Constantinople through the creation of the metropolis of Kyiv and All Rus’, which became the sixtieth metropolis of the Ecumenical Patriarchate,” the address reads.
In the address of the Ecumenical Patriarch it was emphasized: "Recognizing the high responsibility of the First Holy See Church of Constantinople, which never ceased and did not reconcile to illegal and non-canonical situations that shocked the natural functioning of the Orthodox Church, during these crucial times, it took the initiative to restore the unity of the Orthodox believers of Ukraine with the ultimate goal of granting autocephaly to the Ukrainian church".