Fake: burials of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church are no longer recognized
The Orthodox Church of Ukraine recognizes the rites of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church under the Moscow Patriarchate, while the latter denies the sacraments of the former.
Turned upside down. Russian propagandists are actively spreading fake news by claiming that in Mykolaiv, announcements have been posted at a cemetery stating that burials performed according to the rites of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church are no longer recognized. They assert that relatives of the deceased must bear the costs associated with reburial in accordance with the church’s new requirements.
Context: It’s evident that the Ukrainian Orthodox Church referred to here is the Church under the Moscow Patriarchate. The so-called “new requirements” are actually from the Orthodox Church of Ukraine, which received the Tomos of Autocephaly from Patriarch Bartholomew of Constantinople on January 6, 2019.
The claim about the need for reburial is unequivocally false for several reasons. Such false information is primarily disseminated through Russian propaganda channels on Telegram. In the best case scenario, these channels rely on images allegedly provided by readers, without verifying their authenticity; they are taken at face value. In the worst case scenario, the information is presented as an undisputed fact.
Upon examining the photos and videos from the location where the notices were allegedly posted, we found no indications of editing or photoshopping. It appears that someone actually went through the trouble of printing out these shreds of paper, affixing them to the cemetery fence, and then taking a photo as “evidence”, likely commissioned by (pro-)russian propagandists.
This type of falsification is not particularly difficult to execute. The cemetery featured in the video bears a strong resemblance to Mishkovka in Mykolaiv. It’s situated outside the city limits, doesn’t have a church on the premises, and is unsupervised. As a result, it’s no problem to post such notices and take photos without authorization.
In reality, the situation is precisely the reverse. The Orthodox Church of Ukraine acknowledges the rites practiced by the Ukrainian Orthodox Church under the Moscow Patriarchate, which is actually the Russian Orthodox Church. However, the Ukrainian Orthodox Church under the Moscow Patriarchate refuses to recognize the sacraments performed by the Orthodox Church of Ukraine.
As early as 2020, the spokesperson for the Orthodox Church of Ukraine, Archbishop Yevstratiy Zoria, spoke out against the practice of “re-baptism”, stating that it contradicts the teachings of the Gospel, Orthodox theology, canon law, as well as the practices of both the ancient Church and modern times https://bit.ly/41cpyNS.
At the same time, the Metropolitan of the Russian Church has advised that individuals who “were not baptized in the Orthodox Church before they joined the said schismatic communities” should be re-baptized.
The Russian Orthodox Church deems the OCU, UAOC, UOC-KP (now simply known as OCU), and various factions of the so-called “true Orthodox Church” to be “schismatic communities”. However, there are no guidelines regarding Catholics and Protestants on the list compiled by the church.
Archbishop Yevstratiy (Zoria), the spokesperson for the OCU, responded by denouncing the “practice of double administration of the Sacrament of Baptism” as contrary to the teachings of the Gospel and Orthodox theology.
“In the past, the Moscow Patriarchate attempted to legitimize the practice of ‘re-baptisms’, using ‘canonical and theological’ arguments, which FLAGRANTLY CONTRADICTS the teachings of the Gospel, Orthodox theology, canon law, and the practices of both the ancient Church and modern times,” Zoria pointed out.
Reminder. In early April, the UOC-MP in Bukovyna prevented mourners from holding a funeral service for a deceased soldier in the church. This is not an isolated incident, but rather a systematic practice.
If you come across questionable information, please forward it to us for verification. This post was created in response to a request from one of our readers. As a token of our appreciation for sharing and liking, Sova (Owl) sends you a big smooch on the beak