On January 30, 2023, Radio Svoboda aired a story as part of an anti-church campaign that has been going on against the Holy Dormition Pochaev Lavra for several months now. The plot was full of claims, accusations and very dubious facts that journalists allegedly learned from the inhabitants of Pochaev. The abbot of the monastery, Metropolitan Vladimir of Pochaev, responded to the false accusations spread by the journalists of Radio Svoboda. It is reported by “Dozor na “Pershiy Kozatskiy”.
“The authors of Radio Svoboda tell a lie that supposedly people, although they are parishioners of our Orthodox Church, don’t go to church… They tried to film a deserted area — just at such moments when people were either at dinner or were in church … This is wrong. People go to church, thank God!” said Metropolitan Vladimir.
He said that on weekdays, more people pray at the early liturgy, and on Saturday, at all-night and Sunday services, churches are always full, as you can see from photos and videos.
“The parishioners figured it out a long time ago, answered their conscience correctly and go to our church. Deeply believing Orthodox Christians treat important matters, and even more so those on which Eternal Salvation depends,” the bishop added.
The abbot of the monastery also drew attention to the reproaches regarding the Transfiguration Cathedral and noted that it was built legally, in accordance with the relevant requirements, which is confirmed by all the necessary documents, for the glory of God and the convenience of the parishioners.
“It was designed by qualified specialists and there are documents and relevant permits for everything. And our contemporaries should rejoice at our successes, because everything that is done is done for the Glory of God, the convenience of the parishioners, the glory of our monastery, which adorns the Ukrainian land, exalts, complements the history of our glorious monastery, ”he said.
His Eminence recalled that the Church would soon be celebrating the 800th anniversary of the founding of the Pochaev Monastery by Orthodox monks.
“We are the legitimate successors…”, noted the bishop, and recalled that in Soviet times church property was confiscated and, despite promises, the modern government never returned it to the ownership of the Church.
Regarding the situation with the future fate of the monastery, Metropolitan Vladimir said: “As God wills, so be it! How much of this life … the most important thing is to live right, please God, and so that in this alluring, crafty time, a time of trials, so as not to fall away from the lawful, canonical Church of Christ.
“We know one thing, and we must remember this, that the Gospel warns that those who are saved are few. And in the last times, many will be tempted, they will not stand the test. There is a lot of untruth and evil, unfortunately, on Earth. People accept it, live with it and do not want to understand that this does not lead to God and as a result you will not gain eternal salvation. We must remember and know that our Church of Christ is canonical, the grace of the Holy Spirit operates in it, our bishops have apostolic succession, the priests ordained by them are the legitimate priesthood, and therefore the sacraments are performed, people are renewed, cleansed, and those who want to be saved have the opportunity to be saved,” summed up the bishop.