KYIV – President Petro Poroshenko addressed Ukrainians after the Christmas liturgy in St. Sophia Cathedral conducted by the primate of the Orthodox Church of Ukraine, Metropolitan Epifaniy, and emphasized that a miracle had happened during the holy days.
“This year, the voices of Ukrainians have much more faith in victory and confidence. For the Lord has shown us a real Christmas miracle recently. This year’s Christmas is especially great and solemn for us. The holiday is double – the Orthodox Church of Ukraine received the Tomos of autocephaly,” Mr. Poroshenko said.
“We have finally liberated our ancient Church, whose history dates back to the time of the Equal to the Apostles Prince Volodymyr, from Moscow’s captivity. …Our Church has joined the family that now consists of 15 independent Orthodox Churches,” the president noted.
He emphasized that with the Tomos, “the Ukrainian star shone in the constellation of independent and equal national churches.”
“This constellation, in the words of His All-Holiness Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew, is world Orthodoxy,” he added.
The president stressed that “The creation of the autocephalous Orthodox Church of Ukraine is the key to our independence. This is the foundation of our spiritual freedom. We have torn up the last chains that tied us to Moscow with its fantasies of Ukraine as a canonical territory of the Russian Orthodox Church. It will not be so any more.”