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Priests who signed an anti-war petition could be stripped of their priestly privileges and functions

The staff of the Graceful Fire website has demanded to punish the priests who signed the petition pleading to end the military operations in Ukraine. All 293 priests who supported the petition should be stripped of their ministry, the Graceful Fire reported on February 8.

On February 8, the staff of the Grace Fire website requested that priests who publicly spoke out against the Russian aggression in Ukraine be stripped of their ministry. This appeal is addressed to the leadership of the Russian Orthodox Church. The priests' plea to stop the fire is described as "vile and treacherous” and their action is compared with "siding with the Nazis" during World War II.

One of the candidates to be defrocked is Father Ioann Burdin, former rector of the Church of the Resurrection in the town of Karabanovo in the Kostroma region. In March 2022, he and 292 other priests signed a petition demanding to stop the fighting in Ukraine.

Later that month, a court fined Burdin for discrediting the Russian Armed Forces. In April, he resigned from the service and started his own telegram channel.

Several priests have already been suspended from service for disagreeing with the military actions. Fyodor Shumskikh, from the Belgorod Cathedral, is seeking asylum in the United States. Shumskikh left Russia after he was suspended from his parish because of his anti-war position.

Dmitry Baev, a deacon from Kirov, was officially placed on the terrorist list for his anti-war statements. Since the last spring, he has been under investigation in a criminal case for false information about the Russian army. The deacon had published posts on social media in support of Ukraine and its army.


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