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BRAMA News and Community Press

BRAMA, Feb 12, 2007, 1:00 am ET

Press release

Statement by UAOC Bishop Paul Peter Jesep on Anti-Semitism

Bishop Paul Peter Jesep

It is shocking, appalling and un-Christian that 36 percent of respondents in a recent survey by the Kiev International Institute of Sociology did not want Jewish sisters and brothers as fellow citizens. Anti-Semitism has no place in modern, democratic Ukraine. Not only does the government have a responsibility to enlighten the citizenry regarding its ignorance, but every Christian leader has a moral duty to point out that Anti-Semitism is a grievous sin.

Christians must fight against bigotry, prejudice and injustice. We are children of the same God equally loved. An attack against one member of God's family, whether Jew, black, or gypsy, is an attack on all of us.

Jesus is Jewish. He welcomes everyone, even Ukrainians, to his table of salvation and redemption. Jesus is unconditional love. It's something no Ukrainian should forget.

Anti-Semitism cannot be combated unless everyone works toward its end. The church must educate its flock that an embrace or show of complacency toward hatred is an affront to the Creator. Jewish Ukrainians make a valuable contribution to Ukraine and must be accepted with respect and dignity as full citizens and especially as part of the same family of God.

Bishop Paul Peter Jesep
Chancellor of the Archeparchy and
Director of Public Affairs in the United States
Ukrainian Autocephalous Orthodox Church
Statement dated Thursday, 14 December 2006

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