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Eastern Orthodox Patriarchs recognizing schismatic character of Kiev, says Kirill I

January 28, 2016, 2:33 UTC+3 GENEVA

Ukrainian Orthodox Church reporting to Moscow Patriarchate is the only canonical Orthodox Church on the territory of Ukraine, Patriarch said

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© Mikhail Metzel/TASS

GENEVA, January 28. /TASS/. Supreme hierarchs of all the fifteen national Eastern Orthodox Churches recognize the Ukrainian Orthodox Church reporting to Moscow Patriarchate and led by Metropolitan Onufriy as the only canonical Orthodox Church on the territory of Ukraine, the Patriarch of Moscow and all Russia, Kirill I said on Wednesday at the end of his attendance of a conference of ruling hierarchs of the local Orthodox Churches.

The conference was held in Chambesy near Geneva in the run-up to the Pan-Orthodox Council, which will be held later this year.

"The Orthodox world won’t support this tumult and split (…)," he said. "There’s no other message from the Patriarchs to Ukraine today."

Kirill I indicated there could be only one way towards eliminating the split and it implied "negotiations and agreements on the basis of the holy canon."

"There is the Ukrainian Orthodox Church (reporting of Moscow Patriarchate) that’s universally recognized by all the Orthodox Churches and that’s why the people wishing to be Orthodox Christians should reunite with that Church on the basis of the canons that exist in the Universal Orthodox Christianity," he said. "There are no alternatives to it."

The Pan-Orthodox Council will not consider the ‘Ukrainian problem’ or a possible granting of autocephaly to the so-called Kiev Patriarchate or legalization of the split and the Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople Bartholomew I confirmed it.

"He said it clearly no efforts to legalize the split or to grant unilateral autocephaly to anyone would be made either at the Cathedral or after it," Kirill I said.

Earlier on Wednesday, Kirill I said the Pan-Orthodox Cathedral would be held on the Isle of Crete.

Efforts to prepare the Pan-Orthodox Cathedral started out as far back as in 1961. It is likely to become a milestone event for the entire Orthodox world.

Each national Orthodox Church will send 24 bishops to the Cathedral.

The last officially recognized Pan-Orthodox Cathedral took place in the 8th century.

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