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Gnezdichno, Ukraine, March 5, 2019 Video has appeared online showing a “priest” of the schismatic “Kiev Patriarchate” and other activists of the schismatic church and the nationalist terrorist group Right Sector beating parishioners, including women, of the canonical Ukrainian Orthodox Church, reports the site of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church. The video clearly shows “Father” Ivan Lesik, known for political racketeering, pushing and hitting women parishioners of the canonical Holy Transfiguration Church in the village of Gnezdichno in the Ternopil Province, and the same violence being used by the other schismatics and the Right Sector nationalists. The video also shows police standing idly by, not intervening. Despite the multitude of such cases, many of which have been caught on video, the hierarchy of the schismatic church continue to insist that no parishes are every forcefully converted. The press service of the Ukrainian Church stressed that the incident shows how unprotected believers of the canonical Church experience the gross violation of their rights and freedoms. Supporters of the schismatic church held a village meeting on January 13 at which part of the attendees to move into the schismatic church, though the parish community resolved to remain in the canonical Church. At that time, the parties managed to reach an agreement on peaceful co-existence. However, the schismatics returned and started a fight outside the church in early February, injuring the rector Fr. Stephan Balan at that time. The parishioners showed up to protect their church, though the police took the side of the provocateurs. Fr. Stephan warned at that time that they were likely planning to return and finally seize the church, which they did on Sunday. Though the church was to be sealed, with the communities alternating services on the street, they “for the third time broke their own conditions, opened the sealed church, and started celebrating the ‘Liturgy.’ When our faithful came to the church at the end of the service and asked to be given the opportunity to worship in the church, they were sharply refused,” Fr. Stephan explained. Negotiations continued for a while, while 15-20 Right Sector thugs blocked the entrance to the church. After some shouts and shoving, the supporters of the OCU, headed by the pseudo-priest Lesik, began to beat and throw the faithful of the UOC out of the church onto street, under shouts of “There will be no Muscovites here.” In a separate incident in the Ternopil Province, 15 schismatics surrounded the home of Fr. Yaroslav in the village of Trebukhovtsi, demanding that he and his family leave. They say the house also belongs to the church that was seized on February 28, reports the Ukrainian site Vesti. The schismatics have already removed Fr. Yaroslav’s belongings and plan to build a Sunday School in his house. Meanwhile, the priest and his family will have to move to Ternopil, an hour away from his parishioners. http://orthochristian.com/119723.html?fbclid=IwAR1MiMbF6cIE0zFLjNOEfmneNOUmMC13Hkx3KpjW6SXJOIctb6kTYgDn6hc
Two matushkas of the canonical Ukrainian Orthodox Church were injured on Friday when the Church of St. Nicholas in the village of Zhidichin in the Volyn Province was forcibly seized by radicals from the schismatic “Kiev Patriarchate” (KP). As reported by Fr. Roman Geleta, his matushka was injured when a rock hit her just below the eye, and his mother, also a matushka at the parish, was hit in the forehead. Both priests’ wives were taken away from the scene to be examined, reports the press service of the Volyn Diocese. According to Fr. Roman, the faithful of the parish gathered at their church of their own accord to try to prevent the seizure, though the schismatics were able to break through the crowd and cut the locks on the door. The group of raiders included both locals and people brought in from outside. The entrance to the church territory was blocked by a car. At the beginning of the clash, the abbot of a KP monastery in Lutsk arrived and led an akathist with the gathered schismatics. Students of the KP’s Volyn Academy were among those gathered near the church. Before the seizure, the group demanded the keys to the church from the rector, Fr. Vladimir Geleta, but he refused. They then cut the locks to the church and went inside to “take inventory.” They also lite a fire in the church yard and began to “protect” the church. It is unknown if any of the personal belongings of the parish clergy have been taken since no one from the canonical community has been allowed inside the church. Leaflets with schismatic propaganda have been distributed in the village sine the beginning of the month, and Fr. Roman even received a “decree” from Mikhail Zinkevich, a hierarch of the KP, about the local deanery’s acceptance into the KP. Zinkevich even appointed a new rector to replace Fr. Roman’s father, Fr. Vladimir, who has served in the church for 30 years. However, the priests and community of the Church of St. Nicholas have confirmed their intention to remain faithful to the canonical Church several times, in particular on February 10, when a legal parish meeting was held and the faithful expressed their loyalty to the canonical Church and its primate His Beatitude Metropolitan Onuphry of Kiev and All Ukraine. The meeting’s results were recorded in the parish protocols. Fr. Vladimir also had to defend his parish from schismatics in the 1990s. KP representatives even kidnapped his then-3-year old son—Fr. Roman—for several hours to try to convince him to join their schism. http://orthochristian.com/119559.html?fbclid=IwAR29fFthQWZ_sBdsk6jqzO-axSV5Dxx6Daet8p7usaLRfC3UM7u7MKnqELk