28 July 2022, 22:27
Patriarch Kirill describes all Orthodox Ukrainians as children of Russian Orthodox Church
Moscow, July 28, Interfax - Patriarch Kirill of Moscow and All Russia has dismissed reproaches that the Russian Orthodox Church exists only for Russians and noted that all Orthodox Ukrainians, including those who have gone into schism, are children of the Russian Orthodox Church.
"Everything that concerns Donbass, the Lugansk Region, the Kharkov Region - those places where people are suffering today - is very disturbing and hurts my heart, because all the Orthodox people who live there are children of the Moscow Patriarchate," the patriarch said at a meeting with children who had come to Moscow from Donbass and Ukraine on Thursday.
"Some acknowledge this, gladly confess and participate in the life of our Church, some have gone down the path of illegal schismatic separation from our Church, but God is the judge of everyone, and for the patriarch, all Orthodox people in Ukraine are his children, those close to his heart," he said.
The patriarch noted that the Russian Church is present in more than 60 countries, almost on every continent. "People who are malicious, including in Ukraine, sometimes claim that this Church is only for Russians, for 'Moskals,' but this is not true at all," he said.
"Of course, there are more Russians, Russian residents, than others in percentage terms, but after all, percentages do not reflect the spiritual contribution of people to the life of the Church. As the saying goes, the smallest of gold is the dearest," he added.
Patriarch Kirill noted that there are not many saints, but their contribution is incommensurable with that of all the people who call themselves Orthodox believers.
"Therefore, any arithmetic does not work here, and I as a patriarch never apply such arithmetic. For me, all Orthodox people living in the Russian Federation, in Ukraine, in Donbass, in other places in 60 countries of the world, are all children of the Russian Orthodox Church, and I as a patriarch am aware with complete humility of my responsibility for these people, for their spiritual life, for how their spiritual path will unfold," the patriarch said.