2018-11-06 11:52:00

Russian Church considers opening of additional parishes abroad for its believers in regard of break with Constantinople

Moscow, November 6, Interfax - The Moscow Patriarchate is studying the possibility of opening new parishes in those places abroad where its faithful were deprived of the opportunity to take communion due to the break with the Constantinople Church.

"The suspension of communication of the Moscow and Constantinople Patriarchates because of non-canonical actions of Constantinople for the Ukrainian Church forces Russian Church to make greater efforts in the spiritual care of its believers in diaspora," the deputy head of the Synodal Department for External Church Relations Archpriest Nikolay Balashov told Interfax.

Therefore management of the Moscow Patriarchate for foreign institutions is currently examining the queries coming from different parts of the world where some of the believers of Russian Orthodox Church visited the parishes under the jurisdiction of the Church of Constantinople.

"The task is to open the parishes of Russian Orthodox Church in the appropriate places as soon as possible," the priest explained. At the same time, he specified that it is "primarily about those countries that are outside the canonical jurisdiction of a local Orthodox Churches."

In September, Patriarch Bartholomew sent two exarchs to Kiev to prepare for the establishment of an autocephalous church independent from the Moscow Patriarchate. On October 11, the Synod of the Ecumenical Patriarchate abrogated its ordinance of 1686 that put the Kiev Metropolitanate under the jurisdiction of the Moscow Patriarchate, announced the opening of a mission in Kiev, and rehabilitated the leaders of the unrecognized Ukrainian Orthodox churches. In response, the Synod of the Moscow Patriarchate announced that it was fully severing its relations with the Constantinople Patriarchate.