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Russian Orthodox Patriarch urges heads of local Churches to discuss ‘Ukrainian issue’

Patriarch of Moscow and All Russia Kirill has reportedly sent letters to the heads of all Orthodox Churches, urging them to start discussing the church situation in Ukraine. The Patriarch was quoted as saying that the activities of the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople could lead to extremely serious consequences for the unity of world Orthodoxy. The Ecumenical Patriarchate recently signaled its intention to set up a local church independent of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church (Moscow Patriarchate). Aleksandr Volkov, the press secretary of Patriarch Kirill told TASS on September 29 that local [national] Orthodox Churches may initiate a pan-Orthodox Synaxis - consultative assembly or conference - on the problem of the Ecumenical Patriarch’s decision to grant autocephaly to the Church in Ukraine.