Kiev, October 16, Interfax - Ukrainian President Pyotr Poroshenko will soon propose that St. Andrew's Church in central Kiev be set aside for the ecumenical patriarch of Constantinople's permanent use, presidential representative to the Verkhovnaya Rada Irina Lutsenko of the Pyotr Poroshenko Bloc faction said on Tuesday.
"The president supports the desire to receive a tomos [a church ordinance granting autocephaly to the Orthodox Church in Ukraine] as soon as possible. And, as a sign of solidarity with this process, he has made a symbolic gesture: a bill will be registered within the next few days by which President Poroshenko proposes assigning St. Andrew's Church for the ecumenical patriarch's permanent use as a symbolic gesture indicating that St. Andrew once baptized Ukraine," Lutsenko said at a meeting of a conciliatory council of the heads of parliamentary factions, committees, and groups on Tuesday.
The president asked the parliamentary factions to support this bill, she said.
St. Andrew's Church is a Baroque church built on the right bank of the Dnieper River in Kiev based on the Italian architect Bartolomeo Rastrelli's design in 1754. Down from the church runs the Andreevsky Descent, linking the upper part of central Kiev with its lower part.
St. Andrew's Church currently serves as the cathedral of the Ukrainian Autocephalous Orthodox Church.