Thursday, July 05, 2007

Tresspassing in their own parish church

Ukraine: Catholics face trespass charges at their own parish church

Kiev, Jul. 5, 2007 ( - Catholics in Dniepropietrowsk, Ukraine, have been ordered to cease using a church building as face trespassing charges, although the building was built for the local Catholic community, Vatican Radio reports.

The parish church of St. Joseph in in Dniepropietrowsk, which was one of the many Catholic churches confiscated by the country's Communist regime. Efforts by Catholics to regain control of these churches-- many of which were handed over to local Orthodox congregations-- have caused tensions between the Catholic and Orthodox churches in Ukraine.

In Dniepropietrowsk, the efforts by Catholics to regain the use of St. Joseph's church were thwarted through 15 years of petitions and court battles. Finally the town's Catholics noticed that the building had been abandoned, and began gathering there for Mass and Eucharistic adoration. Local police notified the congregation on July 4 that they would be subject to trespassing charges if they continued using the church.

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