Members of the Zelensky-backed OCU Assault Parishioners, Seize Churches in Kiev Province

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Two churches in the Kiev Province were violently seized by members of the Zelensky-backed Orthodox Church of Ukraine (OCU) on Saturday, May 13.

During at least one of the seizures, the radicals belonging to the Patriarchate of Constantinople’s “Orthodox Church of Ukraine” physically assaulted and injured a number of parishioners.

According to the Information-Education Department of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church, at least one parishioner suffered “grave bodily harm” during the attack on the Church of Sts. Peter and Paul in the village of Petropavlovsk.

The raiders also physically assaulted and obstructed the priest of the Moscow Patriarchate, Fr. Vasily Brynzei, from accessing the church to protect it. Eventually, the members of the Zelensky-backed OCU managed to forcibly break down the church doors. When a group of parishioners attempted to defend the church, they too were physically attacked, resulting in several injuries.

A court is still considering a case regarding the illegal re-registration of the church. Moreover, the members of the Zelensky-backed OCU are making efforts to seize the house belonging to the priest’s family, which includes four small children.

On the same day, the Holy Transfiguration Church in the village of Ivankov was also violently seized.

The members of the Zelensky-backed OCU have been attempting to seize this church for over a year. On June 5 of the previous year, individuals unrelated to the church made an illegal decision to transfer its ownership to the OCU. Meanwhile, the faithful members of the congregation have affirmed their loyalty to Orthodoxy. A legal trial has been ongoing to determine the jurisdiction over the church.

According to locals, the seizure was initiated by the local district chairman and took place without any intervention from the police.

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