In Germany, parishes are formed under the jurisdiction of the UOC in the United States. The former priest of the Russian Orthodox Church in Germany, Artem Bondarenko, announced this. He came under the jurisdiction of Archbishop Daniel (Zelinsky) two years ago, informs Religious Truth.
As part of the Russian Orthodox Church, Artem Bondarenko worked on the opening of 4 parishes.
“And my parishioners were mostly ethnic Germans who came from all over the Soviet Union to Germany. But there were also representatives of other nations, like Serbs, Greeks or Bulgarians.
I served in Church Slavonic, but I saw people taking their first steps in the church, having arrived from Kazakhstan, from remote villages. People had no idea at all about the Orthodox Church, but they want to be in it, they are drawn to it, then I combined Church Slavonic and modern Russian, also German, because there were parishioners who did not understand Russian, for example, Greeks or even Orthodox Arabs. We served in many languages: Church Slavonic, Russian, German, and a little Greek or Serbian – we combined it, depending on who was in my church,” said Artem Bondarenko.
The European parishes under the jurisdiction of the UOC in the United States (the former structure of the Ukrainian split in the diaspora, the Phanar took it for itself) are just beginning to form. There are no parishioners yet.
“I live nearby, not far from Erlangen, and there parishes are just being formed, and the second parish in the city of Erfurt is also in a state of formation. I just started to get to know people, communicate, try to unite them. It is not even about building a church, but only about human relations, about friendship,” said the former priest of the Russian Orthodox Church.