Patriarch Bartholomew signs tomos of autocephaly for Ukrainian church
Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I has signed the Tomos of autocephaly for the Orthodox Church of Ukraine (OCU) at St. George's Cathedral in Istanbul.
The ceremony was broadcast live by Ukrainian television channels on Saturday.
Advisor to the Ukrainian president Rostyslav Pavlenko, staying in Istanbul, said that soon the tomos will be officially translated into Ukrainian.
"It has happened! The tomos on the autocephaly (independence) of the Orthodox Church of Ukraine was signed by Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew in the presence of President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko, Primate of the OCU Metropolitan Epiphanius (Epifaniy), and the large Ukrainian delegation," Pavlenko wrote on his Facebook page on Saturday.
The tomos was read in Greek from the pulpit. "The official translation is very soon... Tomorrow is handing," Pavlenko said.
The solemn signing of the tomos was attended by the Ukrainian delegation consisting of President Poroshenko and his wife Maryna, Chairman of the Verkhovna Rada Andriy Parubiy, Third President of Ukraine Viktor Yushchenko, First Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Economic Development and Trade Stepan Kubiv, Deputy Prime Minister Hennadiy Zubko, Foreign Minister Pavlo Klimkin, Minister of Youth and Sports Ihor Zhdanov, Minister of Defense Stepan Poltorak and others.
Before the signing of the document, the head of the OCU, Metropolitan Epiphanius, Metropolitan Oleksandr (Drabynko) and Metropolitan Simeon (Shostatsky) transferred to the OCU from the UOC of Moscow Patriarchate, and Metropolitan of Lutsk and Volynsky Mykhailo (Zinkevych) from the UOC of Kyiv Patriarchate took part in the collective prayer.
The tomos will be delivered to Metropolitan Epiphanius (Epifaniy) on January 6.