Moscow, January 28, Interfax - The Kiev administration's demand that the name of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church be changed to indicate its belonging to the "aggressor country" is reminiscent of the yellow stars Nazis forced Jews to wear, Metropolitan Hilarion of Volokolamsk said.
The law on renaming the Church, which was adopted in late December 2018, took effect on January 26. The document gives the parishes and monasteries of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church three months to state in their charter that they belong to a religious organization with a center in a state "that has committed military aggression against Ukraine and temporarily occupied its territory."
"Why is this being done? To mark the Ukrainian Church as a hostile foreign organization, in the same way that Jews were made to wear six-pointed stars in the Third Reich. It was a holy symbol to Jews, but to the Nazi world a six-pointed star was a sign that meant that the person was an enemy that needed to be destroyed," Metropolitan Hilarion, who leads the Synodal Department for External Church Relations, said on the program Postcriptum on TVTs television.
He also said he believes the renaming of legal entities included in the Ukrainian Orthodox Church has a hidden purpose. "The process of re-registration in today's Ukraine can be lengthy and bureaucratic, and over that period every diocese and even every parish will be pressured to join the new structure," he said.