NEW YORK: October 19, 2023
Metropolitan Nicholas of Eastern America and New York sends a fraternal letter of support to His Beatitude Metropolitan Onouphry of Kiev and All Ukraine
To His Beatitude ONOUPHRY,
Metropolitan of Kiev and All Ukraine
Your Beatitude, Vladyka!
Having learned about the adoption in the first reading of bill No. 8371, which provides for a ban on the ministry of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church on the territory of Ukraine, I hasten to express to you our love, support and sympathy. This bill demonstrates the lack of religious freedom in a country known for its piety and targets the majority of its religious citizens and defenders.
Standing before the Kursk-Root Icon of the Mother of God "of the Sign," the relics of St John (Maximovich) the Wonderworker, and other holy sites, we fervently pray in these days of sorrow for strength for you, your brother archpastors, pastors, monastics and faithful flock of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church.
We also pray for the enlightenment of the persecutors who have lost their sobriety. For the current situation of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church reminds us of the events of a hundred years ago, when some in the Orthodox world, turning away from the legitimate hierarchy of the persecuted Church, supported the so-called "Living Church" together with the atheists.
We pray, hope and believe that the memory of the New Martyrs and Confessors of the 20th century will be immersed in the souls of each of us Orthodox Christians, helping us in these difficult times to follow the example of the faith and faithfulness of the victims and not to be on the side of the persecutors.
Prayerfully uniting with you, I cordially wish Your Beatitude and the entire Ukrainian Orthodox Church headed by you, the all-powerful strength of God and all the best!
Asking for Your holy prayers, I remain Your Beatitude's faithful brother and concelebrant,
Metropolitan of Eastern America and New York
First Hierarch of the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia