26 November 2022, 07:30 PM

Moscow Patriarchate's Archimandrite Nikita comments on recent SBU searches

During searches in the Chernivtsi-Bukovyna Eparchy of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church (Moscow Patriarchate), SBU security service officers “forced priests to undress and then took pictures,” a bishop of church who was photographed said on Facebook on Nov. 25.

"At 7 a.m. we were woken up, the door was broken down, we were taken out of our rooms, everyone who was in the diocese was put against the wall, separated and, as it turns out, photographed…” the bishop, Archimandrite Nikita, said in the video message.

“And then all sorts of obscene additions followed – you probably read all this. God is the judge of all those who wrote it, if they have evidence – let them prove it.”

According to him, the SBU officers conducted searches for almost 12 hours. He alleged that the officers were threatening to shoot the priests.

"It is a pity that the Security Service of Ukraine is not democratic at all and uses some despotic methods of searches,” added Nikita.

“They could have rung the bell, I would have opened the door for them. There would have been no objections on my part.”

On Nov. 25, the Security Service of Ukraine conducted counterintelligence activities at the Chernivtsi-Bukovyna Eparchy of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church (Moscow Patriarchate). In the process, they found manuals from Moscow, as well as Russian citizenship documents and certificates.

A similar check was conducted in the monasteries of the Moscow Patriarchate in Rivne Oblast.

The SBU explained that these measures were taken as part of a systematic work "to counter the subversive activities of Russian special services in Ukraine".

According to outlet, during searches in the Chernivtsi-Bukovyna Diocese of the UOC (MP), the SBU found its secretary in bed with a boy from the local choir. The journalists also published a photo showing Archimandrite Nikita with a boy in his underwear.

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