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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Orthodox Rebels Rally

KIEV () -- Ukraine's breakaway Orthodox Church has unveiled a monument on the gravesite of a patriarch hurriedly buried a year ago near a trolleybus stop outside the country's most important cathedral.


About 1,500 people gathered Sunday outside the 11th-century St. Sofia Cathedral where Kiev city authorities erected a white marble stone to honor Patriarch Volodymyr, who spent 19 years in Soviet prisons on charges of Ukrainian nationalist activity. When Urkrainian authorities refused permission for his burial inside St. Sofia, his nationalist supporters rioted and buried him in the sidewalk outside instead.


Top clerics renewed calls for world Orthodoxy to recognize their church four years after it split with the Russian Orthodox Church in the aftermath of the end of Soviet rule. Ukraine's 35 million Orthodox believers remain split between Filaret's independence church and the local branch of the Russian Orthodox Church, recognized by the Orthodox hierarchy in Constantinople (Istanbul). The pro-Moscow wing still commands a majority of parishes.