Ukraine Orthodox Church

Q. My mom, always a Baptist now finds herself company with people who belong to a Ukraine Orthodox Church. Her Ukraine friends take everything to their church to get blessed then gives items to my mom. My mom believes there are real blessings with these items given to her such as a loaf of bread, a palm branch a vase, etc. (My mom doesn’t use the items as idols but thinks highly of the blessings attached to the items) I don’t know anything about the Ukraine blessings and don’t know how to respond. I am a Christian and attend a non-denomination church. We believe in the teachings directly in the Bible. Do the Ukraine Orthodox people believe in the teachings of the Bible?

A. There are actually two Ukraine Orthodox churches, one affiliated with Moscow and the other with Kiev. Both belong to the Eastern (Russian) Orthodox family and stem from the Eastern branch of the Holy Roman Empire. Their worship is much different from ours, even more liturgical and tradition filled than the Catholic church. The Eastern Orthodox are the oldest Christian denominations tracing their origins to Paul and Barnabas.

They do believe in the Bible, but have added many traditions into their belief system that would no doubt make their founders a bit uncomfortable today.

I would suggest that these items are given with pure motives in an attempt to bring blessing to your mother. Since she’s apparently from a solid Christian background, I wouldn’t worry.

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