Moscow, October 13, Interfax - The decision made by the Synod of the Constantinople Patriarchate on Ukraine forces the Russian Orthodox Church to end its unity with the Ecumenical Patriarchate, Metropolitan Hilarion, the Chairman of the Department of External Church Relations of the Moscow Patriarchate of the Russian Orthodox Church, said.
"The Constantinople Patriarch has recognized the leaders of the split, thus legitimatizing the split that existed for over quarter of a century, and therefore has made it impossible for us to stay united with the Constantinople Patriarchate," Metropolitan Hilarion said in a program aired by the television channel Rossiya 24 (VGTRK) on Saturday.
The Russian Orthodox Church "will have to take measures," he said.
"Of course, we will be discussing them at the Synod; I'd rather not get ahead of Synodic decisions but we have suspended prayer communication and remembrance of the Constantinople Patriarchate in our prayers. I believe that the decisions of our Synod will met church canons," Metropolitan Hilarion said.
It was announced at an urgent meeting of the Synod in Moscow on September 14 that the Russian Orthodox Church will sever its full communion with Constantinople if the latter carries on anti-canonical actions in Ukraine. Nevertheless, on October 11 the Constantinople Synod reinstated leaders of the Ukrainian split, cancelled the canonical letter, issued in 1686, granting the Russian Patriarch the right to ordain the Metropolitan of Kiev, and reinstated the stauropegion of the Ecumenical Patriarch in Kiev.
Metropolitan Hilarion described those actions as "unprecedentedly impudent."
"I cannot describe the actions of Patriarch Bartholomew other than predatory; it is clear to us that they will lead to the split of the Orthodox World. The situation can be cured only if he or any of his successors step back from those encroachments and claims for other's canonical territory," he said.