Moscow, December 20, Interfax - More than half of priests of the Vinnitsa Diocese, who are among those who have recently joined the new church following the footsteps of Metropolitan Simeon, have changed their stance and decided to remain in the Moscow Patriarchate's Ukrainian Orthodox Church, the Union of Ukrainian Orthodox Brotherhoods told Interfax.
"After Metropolitan Simeon of Vinnitsa and Bar said he decided to join the church created by Constantinople, 75 out of 250 priests of the diocese, according to its former head, followed his suit. However, clergymen of the diocese met with the newly appointed hierarch Archbishop Varsonofy at the Church of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross in Vinnitsa on Tuesday. After that 45 clerics, [who have recently decided to leave the canonical Church], said that they will stay in the canonical Church," the interlocutor of the news agency said.
The meeting took place at the Vinnitsa Church of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross, because the Transfiguration Cathedral was passed on to Metropolitan Simeon and his supporters. Meanwhile, believers of the canonical Church will seek the bringing back of the cathedral, the interlocutor of the news agency said.
"Despite the fact that Metropolitan Simeon is a friend of President Poroshenko, and the Transfiguration Cathedral is rented by his community, according to the documents, this community belongs to the Ukrainian Orthodox Church, but not to the one, which Metropolitan Simeon joined the other day," the interlocutor of the news agency said.