Donetsk journalist not allowed in Cathedral as in “private property” of church hierarch
On January 6, 2013, correspondent of Novosti Donbassa Internet-edition, was not allowed in the Holy Transfiguration Cathedral in Donetsk, where he was going to take photos of the Christmas liturgy, the edition reports.
The incident occurred at about 23:45 on January 6. Two men, one dressed in camouflage, were standing at the main entrance to the cathedral. They introduced themselves as "guards of the diocese" and refused to pass the correspondent inside when they noticed his camera.
The journalist produced his identity to the guards, but it did not help him to get into the cathedral.
The guards explained their decision not to allow the media with the fact that the Holy Transfiguration Cathedral is a private property "of the church hierarchy," the edition notes.
The guards specified that Georgiy Gulyayev, the spokesman of the Donetsk Diocese of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church (the Moscow Patriarchate), personally ordered to not let any press into the territory of the cathedral. According to them, the only exception is made for the journalists who were blessed by the church hierarch, were "loyal to the Orthodox faith", and would not write things that "disappoint the clergy ".
According to the edition, in previous years, journalists had no problems with their access to worship in the main city cathedral. As a rule, the regional leadership attends the Christmas Eve worship namely at the Holy Transfiguration Cathedral in Donetsk.Georgy Gulyaev said in a commentary to the Internet-edition that all journalists can freely attend the Christmas service, and he did not make any prohibitions. "Normally, we have no obstacles and conflicts, - he said, adding that it was, most probably, a misunderstanding between the journalist and the guards.