On November 18, 2020, the head of the stauropegic parish in Philadelphia (USA), Bohdan Zgoba, took part in a press conference by the leader of the UOC-KP Filaret Denisenko by video. He called the liquidation of the Kyivan Patriarchate in Ukraine a raider seizure, “for which everyone will be held responsible”. Bohdan Zgoba’s speech was published on the UOC-KP facebook page.
Also, on behalf of the 103-year-old parish of St. Nicholas in Philadelphia, Bohdan Zgoba appealed to the Ukrainian authorities for the deregistration of the UOC-KP and the Kyivan Patriarchate, telling why the diaspora did not accept the conditions for creating the OCU.
“These are the Ukrainians who self-organize and take care of Ukrainian ones, our and your churches abroad, rebuild them and unite around the churches of the UOC-KP abroad. However, without asking their opinion, without explanations, as cattle, we, Ukrainians in diaspora, are sold, renounced, thrown away and said “now you submit to Constantinople”, because the Ecumenical Patriarch decided that when he gave the Tomos for the OCU.
The Patriarch of Constantinople created a split between us, tore us like children away from their mother. And the state, instead of fulfilling Art. 12 of the Constitution of Ukraine, which says that Ukraine takes care of meeting the national, cultural and linguistic needs of Ukrainians who live outside the state, by the hands of officials it is trying to destroy the UOC-KP… We believe that such actions, either by Constantinople or by authorized persons of state bodies of Ukraine, contain direct signs of violation of the right of citizens to freely follow their own religion and are criminal”, said Bohdan Zgoba.
According to him, “we will achieve personal sanctions and everyone will be held accountable who took part in raider actions aimed at destroying the confessional self-identification of Ukrainians in the United States”.