12/09/2015, 00.00
UKRAINE - VATICAN
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Orthodox activists picket Kiev nunciature against Papal visit

After a Way of the Cross, the faithful gathered outside the headquarters of the Vatican diplomatic mission and delivered an appeal to the nuncio: a visit by the Pontiff not previously agreed with Moscow Patriarchate is a violation of ecclesiastical norms.

Moscow (AsiaNews) - Participants in a Way of the Cross dedicated to the memory of the Holy Prince Alexander Nevsky, in Kiev, picketed the headquarters of the apostolic nunciature protesting the possible visit by the Pope to Ukraine.

Interfax-Religion reported on December 6 that Orthodox activists held banners that read "No to Vatican proselytizing in Orthodox Ukraine", "A visit to the canonical territory of the Russian Orthodox Church without her consent is a violation of ecclesiastical norms".

The protesters handed over an appeal addressed to the Nuncio Claudio Gugerotti, that refers to the invitation to visit Ukraine addressed by the President Petro Poroshenko to Pope Francis, during his visit to the Vatican on November 20

"The pontiff officially accepted the invitation – read the letter- this means that supposed visit of the pope of Rome will take place in the time agreed at the level of the Ukrainian Foreign Ministry and Vatican."
The authors also pointed out that the pope's visit to any country is usually held as missionary pastoral visit and according to the rules of interconfessional relations such a visit to the canonical territory of another Church should be agreed with leaders of the Church.

The nunciature was the end point of the Way of the Cross of 6 December, which was attended by several hundred people who walked the streets of the center of Kiev. (N.A.)

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