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Supporters of the schismatic “Orthodox Church of Ukraine” continue capturing churches in the Rovno diocese of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church. In the last two days, worship buildings have been attacked in four villages of the region.

Thus, on May 12, 2019, the church of the Protecting Veil was captured in the Mnishin village, Goshcha district, Rovno region. In the morning, OCU supporters blocked the gates and kept out parishioners who came for the service, including the rector of the church, Archpriest Vladimir Furmanchuk. A fight followed, with church raiders not hesitating to push and beat women. Some men were seriously injured. The police, who came in response to a call, just looked at what was happening from the side. Eventually, the OCU blocked the passage to the territory and after a brief “prayer” installed their own locks on the door.

On the same day, the St. Nicholas church in the Pevche village, Zdolbunov district, Rovno region, was captured. After the beginning of conflicts provoked by the OCU supporters, an agreement was reached that the church would be closed until the court ruling on its ownership. However, on the Sunday of the Myrrh-Bearing Women, the schismatics violated this agreement, cut off the locks and occupied the building.

The day before, May 11, schismatics attempted to capture the church of the Protecting Veil in the Byderazh village, Zdolbunov district, Rovno region. The raiders came to the church under the pretext that they would conducted “a prayer” and initiated verbal stoushes with parishioners of the canonical Church, while several “activists” crept around the worship building, broke the fence and burst into territory. It was followed by a fight in which law-enforcement officers interfered.

During the night of May 12, the OCU supporters, using a metallic crossbar, blocked the entrance to the temporary church of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church at the Bushcha village, Zdolbunov district, Rovno region. The St. Michael church, which belongs to the canonical church, had already been captured by schismatics last February. Since that time, the faithful of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church have had to worship in the parish house. The faithful and the rector have received regular threats and demands that they should leave the village and stop celebrations. The religious community of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church continues defending its rights legally and asks its brothers and sisters in faith to pray for them, the website Pravoslavnaya zhizn reports.

DECR Communication Service