Photo from UNIAN

Press secretary of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the Kyiv Patriarchate (UOC-KP), Archbishop Yevstratiy (Zorya) says the Ukrainian Orthodox monasteries, namely the Kyiv-Pechersk, Pochayiv and Sviatohirsk lavras, should belong to the Ukrainian church.

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"As for the lavras, they are in state ownership and are only handed over to the monasteries of the Moscow Patriarchate for use. Our principled position is that these Ukrainian shrines will belong to the Ukrainian church through history, like the shrines in Russia, Romania, etc.," he told the Ukrainian news outlet Glavred on October 19.

However, according to the archbishop, it is still premature to make predictions on property belonging of the lavras.

"It's too early to predict how it will happen. Most likely, by voluntary decision of the majority of monks of these monasteries. But one thing can be argued now with accuracy and full responsibility: this process will be without violence and won't lead to any negative consequences for the church and Ukraine. Perhaps this will happen in a year, three, five or 10 years. In fact, it's not so important. The main thing is that everyone is aware of the inevitability of this move completion and the need to respect non-violence principles," he said.