A Russian Orthodox church in Holland said on Saturday it is cutting ties with the patriarchate in Russia and has requested to join the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople instead.
In a statement posted to its website it said that after a meeting, “the clergy unanimously announced that it is no longer possible for them to function within the Moscow Patriarchate and provide a spiritually safe environment for our faithful.”
It was “with a heavy heart” that the four priests of Saint Nicholas of Myra in Amsterdam had reached their decision, they said.
They had asked Archbishop Elisey, of the Russian Orthodox Church in The Hague, to grant them canonical dismissal and had applied to join the Constantinople Orthodox Church, the statement added.
In an early statement, the church clergy said that they would no longer mention the name of Patriarch Kirill, head of the Russian Orthodox Church, in their liturgy because of his backing for the invasion of Ukraine.