Autonomy Lost and Regained: The Ukrainian Orthodox Metropolia of Kyiv, 1633-2019

Why is this so important?

In Orthodox Christianity, liturgical prayers are a manifestation of ecclesiastical structure, not just theology. This can be seen when a parish priest prays for his bishop at a certain point in each Divine Liturgy. The bishop, in turn, prays for the head of his autonomous or autocephalous Church,  and the head of each Church prays for the heads of all other Orthodox Churches.

Thus, the commemoration by the Metropolitan of Kyiv of the Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople first, before the Patriarch of Moscow, demonstrates a continued attachment between the Church of Ukraine and the Ecumenical Patriarchate, albeit one administratively mediated through the Patriarchate of Moscow in recognition of the political situation at the time.

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