April 15, 2024

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Veterans hand out medals: “wave of solidarity” moves gay Ukrainian soldiers to tears

Veterans hand out medals: “wave of solidarity” moves gay Ukrainian soldiers to tears
The Orthodox Church of Ukraine issued this certificate to the veterans. Now many are sending them back with their respective medals.

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Ukraine's Orthodox Church stripped of medal after a soldier came out. Now other players are voluntarily giving up their awards.

No time? Blue news in a nutshell for you

  • Ukraine's Orthodox Church stripped of medal after a soldier came out.
  • Dozens of comrades present their awards in protest.
  • “I welcomed this wave of solidarity with tears in my eyes,” says Victor Pylypenko.

Ukraine's Orthodox Church is making negative headlines. Reason: She took back a medal from an army doctor that the man had received for his service in the war against Russia. Dozens of comrades present their awards in protest.

Background: On February 8, His Holiness Filaret of Kiev honored members of the medical unit of the 1st Mechanized Battalion of the 72nd Separate Mechanized Regiment for their “sacrifice and love for Ukraine.” On February 15, the patriarch presented medals to the unit commander, Yuri Litvinenko.

The church describes on Facebook, it is said what happened then: “Viktor Pylybenko is one of the honorable players. Unfortunately, he published false information on his social media pages that Patriarch Philaret had awarded him an openly gay award and that Patriarch Philaret and the Kyiv Patriarchate had radically changed their negative attitude toward LGBTQ+ people.

“I did more for Ukraine than any of you”

This is “a blatant lie,” the Orthodox complain. “Dark forces” tried to distort the facts. The church honored Bylibenko as a soldier, not an activist. The patriarch knew nothing of “sinful inclinations.” Society has a “fundamentally negative attitude toward the sin of Sodom.”

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Patriarch Philaret (left) wants nothing to do with tolerance towards the LGBTQ+ community.
Patriarch Philaret (left) wants nothing to do with tolerance towards the LGBTQ+ community.

Archive image:
EPA

Conclusion: “In view of the open propagation of a sinful ideology and the denial of the existence of God,” the church now strips Viktor Bylibenko of his medal. The decision has now sparked a storm of anger among Pylibenko's compatriots: dozens of players are handing over their medals in protest.

“Viktor Pylypenko has done more for Ukraine than all of you who kneel and pray all day between golden walls.” writes A military member from Facebook. He is not part of the LGBTQ+ movement. holds Another finds him returning more “destroyed jewels.”

The solidarity brings “tears to the eyes” of victims

“If a person deserves an award, they won't take it if you don't like it” Written by Another angry senior. “God is love” writes Soldier Yulia Mykidenko. “It's not you.” The person concerned is touched by this encouragement and he agrees “politics” to do

“I welcomed this wave of unity with tears in my eyes,” says Victor Pylybenko. He was already fed up with “constant attacks by various right-wing extremists and priests”: “When you hear things like this day in and day out, it wears you down – no matter how strong you are.”

So it gave him “indescribable joy” that “this number of bright men whom I respect” wanted to stand up for him and defend him. Yes, he thought the church had changed when he was honored. “It was a mistake,” he realizes now.

He is happy about the “media explosion” he is now experiencing: “It is a good sign of change! Ukrainians want to live in a fair country,” he writes on Instagram.

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