Metropolitan Epifaniy of Kyiv and all Ukraine sent a message to Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew on the two-years anniversary since the signing of the Tomos of the Autocephaly of the Orthodox Church of Ukraine.
In his message, Metropolitan Epifaniy emphasised that the Orthodox Church of Ukraine endured for a long time injustices and violations of the canonical order and fought for the establishment of the truth.
“We came through it and God rewarded us for our patience. You, Your Holiness and the Mother Church warmed our hearts with your love and you freed us from the opponents of the truth.”
He finally addressed the Ecumenical Patriarch and the Lord: “We are grateful. May God grant you, Your All-Holiness, a long, satisfying and healthy life and may He give you spiritual strength and courage to face those who persecute the Mother Church of Constantinople.”
Read the full letter of Metropolitan Epifaniy to Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew:
Your All-Holiness and Divine Archbishop of Constantinople, New Rome and Ecumenical Patriarch, our beloved brother in Christ and co-celebrant with my humble self, Bartholomew, may the Grace and Peace of God be with You.
Christ is born!
The Tomos of the Autocephaly of the Most Holy Orthodox Church of Ukraine was signed by Your All-Holiness and the Mother Church of Constantinople two years ago and we celebrate the two-year anniversary.
Many feelings, memories, sad and pleasant events occurred since our double Epiphany!
The Church of Ukraine has long endured injustice and violations of the canonical order and fought for the establishment of the Truth. It was the very will of the Lord that led many generations before us to walk through that path “for those who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted.” (Matthew 23:12)
We came through it and God rewarded us for our patience. You, Your Holiness and the Mother Church, warmed our hearts with your love, you supported us during our sorrows, and you freed us from the opponents of the Truth. The ambassadors of St. Prince Vladimir, being in the Hagia Sophia of Constantinople and during the celebration of the Divine Liturgy by the then Patriarch, did not know whether they were on earth or in heaven. Therefore, we cannot express our feelings about the day of the Epiphany two years ago, when we were united with You in the Divine Eucharist and in prayer and we celebrated the Holy Epiphany.
This is what I said and what I shouted from my humble heart and on behalf of the respectful Hierarchs, the holy clergy and the pious people of the Most Holy Church of Ukraine! We are grateful to the Lord and You. May God grant you, Your All-Holiness, a long, satisfying and healthy life and may He give you spiritual strength and courage to face those who persecute the Mother Church of Constantinople.
May you live a long life, Your All-Holiness!
We are wholeheartedly grateful and I will be serving as Your brother in Christ and co-celebrant in the Lord.
† Metropolitan Epifaniy of Kyiv and all Ukraine