The Patriarchate of Constantinople has the right and authority to remove the anathema from the heads of Ukrainian churches, which is contrary to the canons of Orthodoxy. This opinion was expressed in an interview with TASS first Hierarch of the Russian Church Abroad Metropolitan of Eastern America and new York Hilarion, reports patriarhiei.
“It is the privilege of the Church, which it [anathema] imposed, — said Metropolitan Hilarion, and not the Patriarch of Constantinople, and it is completely wrong.”
“The fact that all bishops of the Orthodox Church are equal, — he explained, — there is only honourable — for example, his Holiness the Patriarch of Constantinople, because once it [Constantinople] was the capital of the Byzantine Empire. But he is as equal as all the bishops, and he can’t act as in the Roman Catholic Church, where the Pope alone decides such issues”. “The Patriarch of Constantinople can not assume papal privileges, since all are equal, — said the Primate of the Russian Orthodox Church. And all you need to decide and act, according to the canons”.
According to him, the current contradictory situation around the Church of Ukraine, which caused a schism in the Church world, has become possible due to the fact that Constantinople fell under the influence of policy. “The Patriarch of Constantinople became very dependent on third-party, from political parties and from different countries, who want to [have worsened] the division between Ukraine and Russia want in every way to weaken the power of the Russian government, the impact of the country”, — said the Metropolitan of Eastern America and new York Hilarion.