Ecumenical Patriarch signs proclamation of autocephaly of Orthodox Church of Ukraine

Ecumenical Patriarch Bartolomeos I has signed the “tomos” document officially proclaiming the Orthodox Church of Ukraine as autocephalous.

Bartolomeos I signed the document on January 5 in the presence of the Metropolitan of Kyiv and all of Ukraine, Epifaniy, the President of Ukraine, Petro Poroshenko and his family, hierarchs and clergy.

“The pious Ukrainian people have been waiting for this blessed day for seven centuries and, of course, the time has come to enjoy, as well as most Orthodox peoples, the righteous gift of emancipation and independence and self-rule, free of outside dependence and intervention,” the Ecumenical Patriarch said in his speech immediately after reading the volume.

“It was your right, your Excellency, to seek and to claim your autocephaly”.

Epifany, the first Prelate of the new autocephalus Ukrainian Church, spoke, expressing his gratitude to the Mother Church of Constantinople and personally to the Ecumenical Patriarch. He said that the daughter Church of Ukraine will never forget everything her Mother Church has offered from ancient times until today.

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At the ceremony on January 5 2019, from left, Epifaniy, the head of the Orthodox Church of Ukraine, Ecumenical Patriarch Bartolomeos I and Ukraine’s President Petro Poroshenko.