A witness in a church court cannot be a person “who is out of church fellowship, with the exception of cases on charges of committing church offenses against neighborly and Christian morality.” In addition, incompetent people, as well as persons convicted by a church court for knowingly false denunciation, cannot be involved in this capacity.
“If your witness meets the above requirements, and during the hearing the court will have doubts about the veracity of your words, which Hodos ED can confirm, you will be able to invite him to testify,” the diocese said in an official response to shegumen Sergiy. At the same time, the diocese noted that the meetings of the church court are closed, and therefore the presence of E. Hodos throughout the meeting will be impossible.
Earlier, associate of the schema-man Vsevolod Moguchev said on his page on VKontakte that the publicist Eduard Khodos sent a petition addressed to the secretary of the church court of the Yekaterinburg diocese. In it, he offered to participate as a witness in a church court on July 3, at which representatives of the Yekaterinburg diocese will judge Shegumen Sergius on charges of disobedience to the ruling bishop and a split.
According to Moguchev, shegumen Sergius will consider the meeting of the church court valid if Khodos is present there. “As I understand it, this person has that information that directly relates to the root causes of the persecution that was unleashed against Father Sergius,” Moguchev explained to RBC.
The rebellious schemygumen Sergius invited the patriarch to resign
Schiigumen Sergius (Romanov)
At the end of May, schema-man Sergius released a video message in which he called the coronavirus pandemic a myth and called for disobedience to the church leadership and authorities, which temporarily prohibited the attendance of worship services. After that, the Center for Combating Extremism of the Main Directorate of the Ministry of Internal Affairs in the Sverdlovsk Region organized an audit, as a result of which the clergyman found signs of incitement to hatred. Metropolitan of Yekaterinburg and Verkhotursky Cyril forbade shiigumen to serve until the consideration of his case by a church court.
Eduard Khodos, whose presence as witness at a church court was asked by the Shiigumen Sergiy, is the author of the book “Jewish Fascism, or Chabad – the Road to Hell”, and also calls himself the founder of the HODOS program – the Christian Liberation Voluntary Unified Union.