Hatred and contempt are consistently incited in regard to the Ukrainian Orthodox Church through its positioning as an internal enemy. This is stated in the address of Metropolitan Luke of Zaporozhye and Melitopol to the participants of the on-site meeting of the Expert Council on Freedom of Conscience and Activities of Religious Organizations at the Ministry of Culture of Ukraine.
According to Vladyka Luke, the Ukrainian media, using a policy of double standards, lay the foundation for seizing the churches of the UOC and provide the back-up for the state’s discriminatory policies regarding the UOC.
“The layering of society into “right” and “wrong” has been vividly manifested,” the hierarch notes. “The ‘right’ Ukrainians are those who hate the UOC. All those who attend the UOC temple are “Moscow stooges”. Since 2014, government officials have been using the term “non-patriotic” and “enemy” in relation to the Church.”
His Eminence Luke stressed that adherence to democratic principles of the inadmissibility of violating the autonomy of religious organizations and interfering with liturgical practices would help avoid abuses that can lead not only to the deterioration of church-state relations, but also to a social explosion.