The representatives of the Ministry of Culture of Ukraine on Thursday were not allowed into the Kyiv Pechersk Lavra by the parishioners of the Ukrainian Church under the Moscow Patriarchate
The clergy of the Ukrainian Church of the Moscow Patriarchate had to leave the territory of the Lavra on March 29. However, they are still fighting eviction. The Ukrainian Orthodox Church, earlier supported by the Ukrainian state, found itself sidelined after the government endorsed the autocephalous Orthodox Church of Ukraine in 2018–2019. Although the older church claimed it suspended ties with the Russian Orthodox Church following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine last year, it still remains formally dependent on it. The Ukrainian president
Volodymyr Zelenskyy also backed the non-renewal of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church’s lease, describing it as a step forward towards his country’s “spiritual independence” from the aggressor.