10 February 2021, 20:39
Court denies former schema hegumen Sergy right to participate in dispute over church on territory of Sredneuralsky Convent
Yekaterinburg, February 10, Interfax - The Arbitration Court of the Sverdlovsk Region has declined motions seeking to involve former schema monk Sergy (Nikolay Romanov) and the nuns of the Sredneuralsky Convent as third parties in litigation on the right to the church on the territory of the convent, Svetlana Gerasimova, a lawyer for Sergy, said.
"Our motion [to involve Sergy as a third party] was declined; we will appeal," Gerasimova told Interfax on Wednesday.
Another ten motions were filed by the convent's nuns, who were able to prepare the relevant documents, she said.
"Their motions have been declined as well. And the diocese will apparently be making these nuns leave, as the diocese's lawsuit was granted today," Gerasimova said, adding that this court decision will most probably be appealed, as well.
According to earlier reports, the Yekaterinburg Diocese on October 20, 2020 filed a lawsuit with the Arbitration Court of the Sverdlovsk Region against the administration of Sredneuralsk seeking the recognition of its right of ownership over the building of the church on the territory of the Sredneuralsky Convent, where Sergy was the confessor.
In February 2021, Gerasimova asked the court to involve her client in the litigation as a third party. "Father Sergy is the person who built this convent complex. And in this case, his rights are directly affected by this case," she told Interfax.
The Arbitration Court of the Sverdlovsk Region granted the Yekaterinburg Diocese's lawsuit on Wednesday.
On December 29, 2020, Moscow's Basmanny District Court issued an arrest warrant for former schema hegumen Sergy, who had been detained at the Sredneuralsky Convent the night before.
He has been charged with several criminal offenses, such as inducement to suicide, violation of the right to freedom of conscience and religion, and arbitrariness.
Sergy's defense lawyers contested his arrest, but the Moscow City Court upheld it on February 8.
Sergy, who was earlier stripped of his religious orders for violating his priestly oath, monastic vows, and several apostolic rules and church canons, was excommunicated by the Church on September 10, 2020. He had repeatedly said that he would not leave Sredneuralsky Convent.