"It was representatives of the UOC MP’s wing, which is in favor of the idea of autocephaly for the Ukrainian Orthodox Church, supporting the creation of such a church, planning to attend to the Council and create this church," Adviser to the President of Ukraine, director of the National Institute for Strategic Studies, Rostyslav Pavlenko told Pryamiy TV channel, Censor.NET reports citing UNIAN.
"They talked about the insane pressure being exerted on them," the presidential adviser said. He also suggested that those who did not want that this meeting be held were either synchronizing their actions with Moscow or received instructions from there. "Because it was exactly about preventing direct dialogue – that's the only explanation we can imagine. Instead of an open discussion, they wanted to do some kind of a political demonstration," Pavlenko added.
According to Relyhiyna Pravda's sources, the following hierarchs of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the Moscow Patriarchate met with the head of state: Metropolitan Oleksandr (Drabynko), Metropolitan Simeon, and Archbishop Filaret.
On Nov. 13, Poroshenko was to meet with the episcopate of the UOC-MP at the "Ukrainian House" downtown Kyiv. At the same time, the episcopate of the UOC-MP on this day held in the Kyiv-Pechersk Lavra an emergency meeting of the synod, which decided to convene a council, where all bishops' attendance is obligatory. Following the meeting, the council of bishops of the UOC-MP confirmed its readiness to meet with Poroshenko, but on the church territory.
On Nov. 13, the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of Moscow Patriarchate (UOC-MP) announced it did not recognize a decision by the Holy Synod of the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople to continue the process of granting autocephaly to the church in Ukraine and is going to sever Eucharistic communion with Constantinople. The Moscow Patriarchate also said they would not take part in the creation of a new, autocephalous church in Ukraine, as their Council of bishops considers that granting the tomos of autocephaly is "artificial" and "forced from outside."
On April 17, 2018, President Poroshenko said Ukraine was closer than ever before to creating an autocephalous united local church.
On Sept. 2, hierarchs held meetings (Synaxis) of the Hierarchy of the Ecumenical Throne Constantinople (Istanbul, Turkey) to confirm that the Church of Constantinople is authorized, without the consent of other churches, to grant autonomy, or autocephaly, to a church that has requested it. This paves the way for autocephality of Ukraine's church. Further measures, such as the adoption of documents at the Synod, are expected to be taken in October.
Subsequently, on Sept. 7, Ecumenical Patriarchate has appointed two Exarchs in Kyiv as part of preparations for granting autocephaly to Ukraine's Orthodox church. "Within the framework of the preparations for the granting of autocephaly to the Orthodox Church in Ukraine, the Ecumenical Patriarchate has appointed as its Exarchs in Kyiv His Excellency Archbishop Daniel of Pamphilon from the United States, and His Grace Bishop Hilarion of Edmonton from Canada, both of whom are serving the Ukrainian Orthodox faithful in their respective countries under the Ecumenical Patriarchate," the Ecumenical Patriarchate said in an announcement.
On Sept. 25, the UOC-MP declared that it was demanding that the Patriarchate of Constantinople withdraw its exarchs from Ukraine. In particular, the Holy Synod of the UOC-MP at a meeting held in the Kyiv-Pechersk Lavra September 25, expressed its attitude regarding the appointment of the Exarchs of the Constantinople Patriarchate to Kyiv.
On Oct.11, 2018, Ecumenical Patriarchate has decided to proceed to the granting of autocephaly to the Church of Ukraine. In addition, the legal binding of Synod’s Letter of 1686 was abolished, thus pulling the Kyiv Metropolis from under Moscow jurisdiction. The Ecumenical Patriarchate also reinstated head of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the Kyiv Philarchate Filaret and head of the Ukrainian Autocephalous Orthodox Church Makariy in their canonical status.
On Oct. 12, the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the Kyiv Patriarchate (UOC-KP) called for the episcopate, clergy and believers of the Ukrainian Autocephalous Orthodox Church (UAOC) and the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the Moscow Patriarchate (UOC-MP) to begin preparations for a unifying Council.
On Oct. 15, the Holy Synod of the Russian Orthodox Church decided to break the eucharistic communication with the Ecumenical Patriarchate.
On Oct. 18, the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine passed the law on the transfer of the St. Andrew's Church to the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople for perpetual free of charge usage.