KIEV, Ukraine – By Alexey Ivanov – At about 9 am on November 30, a crowd of SBU enforces arrived on three buses in the village of Voronkov, Boryspil district, Kyiv region. The target of the invasion was the house of the vicar of the Holy Dormition Kiev-Pechersk Lavra of Metropolitan Paul.
The infamous and scandalous website Mirotvorets (“Peacemaker”) had previously added His Eminence Metropolitan Paul of Vyshogorod and Chernobyl into its “Chistilische” (“limbo” or “purgatory”) database of enemies of and threats to Ukraine, reports the Union of Orthodox Journalists.
The bishop is called an “enemy of the independence of Ukrainian Orthodoxy out from under the control of Russia (an aggressor country) by the Russian Orthodox Church.”
The website has the backing of the Ukrainian government, being curated by the Security Service of Ukraine.
A criminal case has now been opened against him, under Poroshenko, about “inciting religious hatred” (Article 161 of the Criminal Code of Ukraine).
“The Security Service of Ukraine conducts searches at the place of residence of the head of the Kiev-Pechersk Lavra, Metropolitan Paul, under the article on violation of citizens’ equality of rights depending on their racial, nationality, or attitude to religion.
The fact is “, – said the representative of the Security Service of Ukraine to the agency” Interfax-Ukraine “. “… Employees of the Security Service of Ukraine are conducting authorized investigative actions at the abbot of the Kiev-Pechersk Lavra,” the SBU press secretary Yelena Gitlyanskaya wrote on Facebook, refusing to go into details.
“The Rzhishivsky city court of the Kiev region, at the request of the prosecutor of the Kagarlyk local prosecutor’s office, gave permission to conduct a search in the apartment of Metropolitan Paul, as well as in the Lavra.”
Criminal proceedings are open after one of the interviews of Metropolitan Paul. The ruling of the court says:
“October 25, 2018 on YouTube hosting on the YouTube channel Glavnovosti” a video was posted with an interview with the governor of the Holy Dormition Kiev-Pechersk Lavra of the UOC Lebed Peter Dmitrievich called “Metropolitan Paul about Philaret: He kissed a demon.” Employees of the Department for the Protection of National Statehood of the SBU, after viewing the said interview, concluded that Lebed, by its statements, violated the equal rights of citizens because of their religious beliefs.
As part of criminal proceedings, law enforcement officers conduct investigative actions, namely searches to identify records (notebooks, notepads, notebooks, letters, documents) or electronic media in order to identify facts confirming that the Metropolitan has prepared deliberate actions aimed at inciting religious hatred …
Searches of the Metropolitan and the governor of the Monastery look like a purely political order. If there were already any discriminatory statements in the statement of Pavel (Paul), then what should be looked for at his home and in the buildings of the Lavra? Not enough video evidence – after all, an interview with the master is available on YouTube.
Apparently, the investigators needed a reason to enter the Lavra and the household of its viceroy. In a political sense, the participation in the case of the department “T” of the SBU – for the protection of national statehood is its official role. So, this is not about ordinary discrimination of citizens on grounds of religion. The T department deals with more global things. Apparently, from the statements of Paul, they plan to do something connected with the undermining of the existing system, ” writes Strana.ua.
The portal concludes that the “preparation of the soil for the extraction of the Kiev-Pechersk Lavra is in full swing. If the Metropolitan is now accused of some kind of anti-state acts, then this will be the reason for making tough political decisions on the monastery.
It is important to understand that the governor of this monastery is one of the toughest opponents of autocephaly. At the recent Sobor of the UOC, he openly criticized Metropolitan Simeon of Vinnitsa, whom he is seen as the head of the newly created church in Bankova. And, considering that selecting Lavra is an openly pronounced goal of supporters of autocephaly, the figure of Paul here becomes extremely uncomfortable. Paul is an open and non-confronting hierarch.
In any conflict around the monastery, he always went out and personally communicated with the radicals, engaging in a squabble with them. The latest example is his intercourse with the C14, who blocked the entrance to the Lavra last winter. Not every functionary of the UOC-MP is capable of this. This means that Paul, if necessary, will be able to organize the “defense” of Lavra, if it is already “physically pressed” physically. ”
A well-known Russian religious scholar, Doctor of Historical Sciences Roman Silantyev, in an interview with RT, said that searches are being conducted “in order to exert pressure and neutralize the enemy. I would not be surprised if they find anything there. A typical pressure mechanism that is as old as the world itself. Everything happens in the framework of the current policy of the Ukrainian government. That was to be expected. I think this is not the last search and not the last bishop. But the Kiev-Pechersk Lavra is a key monastery. Therefore, the SBU started with him, and there. ”
Another vile Facebook post was noted by adviser to the Kiev Minister of the Interior Arsen Avakov: “The rector of the Kiev-Pechersk Lavra Pavel. Direct agent of influence of the Kremlin through the segment of the destructive activities of the ROC. Putin-Gundyaevskaya rat. Hates Ukraine, Ukrainians and everything Ukrainian. At the moment, this Moscow ghoul is undergoing authorized searches and necessary investigative actions are being taken. To be continued”.
Paul himself at the beginning of the search of the house was not there. In general, he lives exclusively in the Kiev-Pechersk Lavra. When the metropolitan arrived in Voronkov, he was not allowed into his household. Vladyka commented on the search in his subsidiary farm: “What, cows are commiting suicide? Sheeps? What to look for there? I don’t mind, let them search, maybe someone needs dung in the spring, so you will know where to get it for your garden. ”
The “catch” during the search of several hours is small. A single book has been seized: “Ukrainian Orthodox Church: Relations with the State. Attitude to “ATO” and church schism. Questions and answers”.
Yesterday-the day before, people in civilian clothes, introduced themselves as members of a special commission of the Ukropsky Ministry of Culture, came to the inventory of the Near and Far Caves of the Kiev-Pechersk Lavra, where the 125 immortal saints of the Lord rest. In September 2018, a deputy of the Verkhovna Rada, a former leader of the UNA-UNSO * (an extremist group banned in the Russian Federation), a decrepit scion of SS Hauptsturmführer Yuri-Bogdan Shukhevych, demanded to “conduct an audit and provide twenty-four-hour control” over the church property of the Kiev-Pechersk Lavra “and others Religious buildings controlled by the UOC-MP.
“I would not be surprised if there are searches and harassment,” said Metropolitan Paul on November 29. At the same time, he said that several cases under the heading of “secret” had been initiated against him: that they may incriminate me. ” Vladyka explained: “I am accused of being wrong with Patriarch Bartholomew, and I am talking about Philaret in some obscene words.”
Petr Dmitrievich Lebed was born on April 19, 1961 in the village of Borbin, Mlinovsky District, Rivne Region, Ukrainian SSR. He served in the ranks of the Soviet army. Ordered to the deacon, a year later – to the priesthood. From 1988, he was the rector of the Assumption Church in the village of Nizkinichi, Ivanichesky district, Volyn region.
He graduated from the Moscow Theological Seminary and the Kiev Theological Academy, was tonsured a monk with the name of Paul, elevated to the rank of archimandrite. On March 30th, 1994 he was appointed governor of the Kiev-Pechersk Lavra. In 1997, he was consecrated bishop of Vyshgorodsky, vicar of the Kiev Metropolis, with instructions to continue the administration of the Kiev-Pechersk Lavra. In 2003 he was elevated to the rank of archbishop. Since July 27, 2009 – Member of the Inter-Council Presence of the Russian Orthodox Church. On May 1, 2011, he was elevated to the rank of metropolitan with the title of Vyshgorodsky and Chernobyl.
By the decision of the Synod of the UOC of June 14, 2011, he became a member of the permanent members of the Synod of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church. By the decision of the Synod of the UOC of August 26, 2011, it was approved by the chairman of the Synodal Commission on Monasteries of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church. In January — May 2012, he was the temporary governor of the Kiev Diocese.
In the summer and autumn of that year, he became seriously ill, he was hospitalized with a high fever and heart pains, and arsenic and mercury were found in the blood of the metropolitan. Vladyka strongly condemned the euromaidan and supported the employees of the “Golden Eagle”. 09/20/2018 entered into the database of the Nazi website “Peacemaker” for “anti-Ukrainian propaganda.”
“Today pressure is being exerted on me from all sides, but I want to assure you that I am in the holy cathedral apostolic canonical church. And I don’t recognize another church, ”stressed Metropolitan Paul on November 30.
“We see that under the cover of martial law, the junta immediately proceeded with repression and, without embarrassment, launched an attack on the Kiev-Pechersk and Pochaev Lavra. The monks of the monasteries live as if on a volcano, tensely expecting what else will happen in relation to their monasteries and all the Shrines. We pray, brothers and sisters for the suffering brethren in Ukraine … ”, – wrote Valery Kaurov, chairman of the Union of Orthodox Citizens of Ukraine and the United Fatherland organization.
“Once again the question arises:“ What kind of state is this, where some scum can desecrate public shrines? ”,” Writes Mykola Azarov, the former Prime Minister of Ukraine. “The Kiev-Pechersk Lavra has seen everything in its thousand-year history: the ruin by the Tatar-Mongol invaders, and the outrage during the foreign occupation, and the closure during the times of atheism. And each time after the devastation and desolation, she was revived and carried the holy Orthodox faith to the people, ”he notes.
The Most Blessed Onufry, Metropolitan of Kiev and All Ukraine: “I would like to appeal to all Orthodox believers in Ukraine. Do not be afraid of anything, be firm in your love for God, keep the purity of the Orthodox faith, which is the road leading to God.
Love each other, endure each other, help each other. Evil will pass, but good will live forever. If we live in love for everyone and for each other, then no evil will defeat us. God is a God of power. But evil has no power. Live with God! ”