161119_3.jpg – 22/11/16

On November 19, Ukraine’s Parliament Speaker Andriy Paruby during his visit to Turkey met with Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew on the premises of the Patriarchate of Constantinople, the official website of the Verkhovna Rada reports.

At the meeting, on behalf of Parliament the Speaker welcomed Patriarch Bartholomew on the 25th anniversary of his Patriarchal ministry and presented him with a bouquet of flowers and a symbolic gift featuring the Cathedral of St. Sophia.

“St. Sophia is our national shrine, which unites Ukrainian nation and its Universal Church with the Ecumenical Mother Church from whichRus – Ukraine received baptism, ”Andriy Paruby said welcoming Patriarch Bartholomew.

During the over two-hour meeting they discussed the prospects of the single Local Orthodox Church in Ukraine and granting it theTomos of autocephaly.

His Holiness Patriarch Bartholomew thanked the Parliament Chairman and all MPs for the appeal, which the Ukrainian parliament approved in June 2016, to the Ecumenical Patriarch of Ukraine to set up a unified national Orthodox church and provide it the autocephalous status. Patriarch Bartholomew called this Parliament’s appeal“an important historical event.”

At the end of the meeting, Parliament Speaker AndriyParuby thanked Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew for the spiritual care of the Ukrainian diaspora in the US, Canada, Australia and Turkey, the prayer of the Ecumenical Patriarch for Ukraine.

During the joint press conference at the end of the meeting, Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew said: “We are delighted with Ukrainian people. We love you and bless you as the Mother Church. I have been several times in Ukraine and hope to visit it again soon.”

“We have a unique historical opportunity. Millions of Ukrainian ask God and hope that the unified Ukrainian Orthodox Church will rise in Ukraine and the Ecumenical Patriarch will give it the Tomos of ecclesiastical independence – autocephaly. Patriarch Bartholomew is very well aware of the religious situation in Ukraine, so we managed to discuss religious issues very closely,” Chairman of the Ukrainian Parliament said.

Andriy Paruby invited His Holiness Patriarch Bartholomew to visit Ukraine and speak to the Parliament.

The Parliament Speaker visited the Patriarchal Cathedral of St. George in the Ecumenical Patriarch’s residence in the Phanar and prayed onto the great shrines of the Orthodox world that are placed there.