Churches: Christianity in Ukraine is noted for its strength and resolution

Watch more of our videos on Shots! 
and live on Freeview channel 276
Visit Shots! now
Religion in war-torn Ukraine is highly diverse, but close on three-quarters of the 43 million population belong to a Christian faith, with Eastern Orthodox churches predominating.

A 2018 survey found 71.7 per cent of the population declared themselves as believers, with 67 per cent adhering to one or other strand of Orthodox Christianity.

Orthodox Christians in Ukraine break down in Kyiv Patriarchate, Moscow Patriarchate and Auocephalous sectors, with some having links to Roman Catholicism. Politically, the Orthodox Christians split, some espousing separatist Ukrianian nationalism and looking to the west, and others looking east to Russia.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

Other Christian denominations include Ukranian Byzantine Rite Catholics, Latin Rite Catholics, Reformed Protestants (about three per cent), while both Judaism and Islam are a very tiny minority. Current president of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelwnskyy is Jewish who lost family in the German Holocaust of the Second World War.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr ZelenskyyUkrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy

The history of Christianity in Ukraine dates back to the earliest centuries of Christandom to the Apostolic age, with mission trips from the Middle East along the Black Sea and a legend of St Andrew even ascending the capital Kyiv. The first Christian community on territory of modern Ukraine is documented as early as the ninth century with establishment of the Metropolitanate of Gothia, centred on the Crimean peninsula.

Irish Presbyterian moderator the Rev Dr David Bruce has written to all ministers and congregations in his church asking them to pray for the Christian denominations in Ukraine, for their endurance, protection and faithful witness in face of this time of trial. “Pray especially that a way might be found to bring a peaceful end to this needless war,” said Dr Bruce.

——— ———

A message from the Editor:

Thank you for reading this story on our website. While I have your attention, I also have an important request to make of you.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

With the coronavirus lockdowns having had a major impact on many of our advertisers — and consequently the revenue we receive — we are more reliant than ever on you taking out a digital subscription.

Subscribe to and enjoy unlimited access to the best Northern Ireland and UK news and information online and on our app. With a digital subscription, you can read more than 5 articles, see fewer ads, enjoy faster load times, and get access to exclusive newsletters and content.


now to sign up.

Our journalism costs money and we rely on advertising, print and digital revenues to help to support them. By supporting us, we are able to support you in providing trusted, fact-checked content for this website.

Ben Lowry, Editor