Autocephaly is goal of Ukrainian Orthodox Church of Kyiv Patriarchate - Filaret
The Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the Kyiv Patriarchate is ready to engage in dialogue with the Russian Orthodox Church on its autocephaly, but will resolve this issue with Constantinople if Moscow refuses, Patriarch Filaret (Denysenko) of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the Kyiv Patriarchate said.
"We did not initiate this dialogue [with the Russian Orthodox Church]. Moscow initiated it. And we are in dialogue on autocephaly with the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople. Because they [Moscow] offered us reconciliation and paths to reconciliation, we took that step [of writing the letter]," he told a press conference in Kyiv on Friday.
The head of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the Kyiv Patriarchate said he believes the story with the letter will not complicate negotiations between the Kyiv Patriarchate and Constantinople.
The Constantinople patriarch claims that Ukraine is a canonical territory of Constantinople, he said.
"If Moscow does not want to conduct negotiations with us on an autocephalous church, we will have negotiations with the Patriarchate of Constantinople on that autocephaly. Autocephaly is our goal," Filaret said.