Moscow Patriarch Has No Influence On Kremlin Policy, Filaret Says

September 15, 2014
Patriarch Kirill of Moscow. Photo:

Staunton, September 14 – Patriarch Kirill of the Russian Orthodox Church of the Moscow Patriarchate has “no influence on Russian President Vladimir Putin or on Kremlin policy,” according to Patriarch Filaret, head of the Russian Orthodox Church of the Kiev Patriarchate.

Instead, Filaret said in Lviv on September 13, influence runs in the other direction because the Moscow Patriarchate is dependent on the Russian state just “as it always was, both in Soviet times and in tsarist Russia.”

Consequently, the Ukrainian patriarch continued, “under contemporary conditions, Patriarch Kirill cannot speak openly or truthfully” or hope to have any influence on the Kremlin. That is something which simply “cannot be.” As a result, “the voice of Patriarch Kirill does not count for anything,” at least in the Kremlin.