Prime Minister of Lithuania Ingrida Simonyte supported some of the Orthodox who want to secede from the Moscow Patriarchate and wrote a letter to the Ecumenical Patriarch about the restoration of the activities of the Ecumenical Patriarchate in Lithuania.
It is reported by Ukrinform with reference to Delfi.
“We draw attention to the fact that the decision to restore the parish(s) of the Patriarchate of Constantinople in Lithuania can only be taken by the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople – this is the business of the Church and the faithful. The Government of Lithuania will participate in this process to the extent necessary to ensure freedom religion, conscience and religion, enshrined in Article 26 of the Constitution, for all residents of Lithuania,” the press secretary of the Prime Minister said about the text of the letter.
It is reported that some of the Lithuanian Orthodox clergy are asking the Ecumenical Patriarch to allow the Orthodox in Lithuania to restore canonical submission to the Patriarchate of Constantinople. Now they are subordinate to the Moscow Patriarchate, and its Patriarch Kirill openly supports Russia’s war in Ukraine.
On May 18, Lithuanian Ambassador to Turkey Richardas Degutis visited the Ecumenical Patriarchate and presented a letter from the Prime Minister to Patriarch Bartholomew.
As reported, the Orthodox Church is one of the nine traditional religious communities in Lithuania. It belongs to the Moscow Patriarchy. Metropolitan Innokenty of Vilna and Lithuania is at the head of the community. On March 17, he issued an appeal in which he strongly condemned the war in Ukraine. However, a month later, Innokenty dismissed the priests who openly condemned Russia’s war against Ukraine, and later he accused them of splitting in order to “transfer to the jurisdiction of the Patriarchate of Constantinople.”