The Orthodox Church of Ukraine (OCU) is reportedly considering a significant change in one element of its tradition, which has existed since the 16th century; switching to the Gregorian calendar. If implemented, this change would mean that religious holidays will, in future, be celebrated at the same time as other Christian denominations. Christmas, for instance, would be celebrated on Dec. 25 instead of Jan. 7 and Easter, which in 2023 was observed the week after the Catholic church, will now be the same.

 A decision on whether or not to implement the switch in the calendar will be made at the Bishops' Council in May, according to Metropolitan Epiphanius, the head of the OCU. He believes that adopting the Gregorian calendar will allow for greater accuracy in the observation of these most sacred of dates and prevent a gradual shift in the dates of fixed holidays in the future.

 In an interview with, he explained that although there are still some challenges ahead, he is confident the church will overcome them with God's help.

 It is worth noting that the OCU currently follows the Julian calendar, which is also used by the Russian Orthodox Church. However, the Julian calendar differs from the Gregorian calendar, because of days that were ‘lost’ since the Gregorian calendar was widely adopted in 1582, due to the way the length of the year is calculated. The difference is currently 13 days.

 In February, the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church also announced its intention to begin using the Gregorian calendar from Sep. 1, after numerous requests from its congregation, as well as consultations with its clergy.

 The Church said, however, that even though it will switch to the new calendar, it will retain the current method used to calculate the date of Easter. It also announced that for those parishes that do not yet feel ready to take such a step, they may retain calculations of liturgical life, in line with the Julian calendar until 2025.

To suggest a correction or clarification, write to us here
You can also highlight the text and press Ctrl + Enter

Comments (3)
Stephan Hobbs
This comment contains spoilers. Click here if you want to read.

Why is it that the Ukrainians have to give into the West and all its evils? Next it will be the LGBTQT+++ parades and drag shows. For me the Ukrainian church should follow its traditions which come from Christianity, from St. Volodymr and Oleh. I do not care what the pope of Rome and the West say. They can all jump in the lake.
This comment contains spoilers. Click here if you want to read.

Do it! Come into the 21st century.
This comment contains spoilers. Click here if you want to read.

The earliest Christians did not have a time when they regularly observed the birth of Christ. For the first three centuries of Christianity’s existence, Christ’s birth wasn’t celebrated at all. December 25 dates back to the 3rd century, when Hippolytus of Rome wrote, “The first advent of our Lord in the flesh, when he was born in Bethlehem, was December 25th, Wednesday.” The truth is we simply don’t know the exact date of our Savior’s birth. Galatians 4:4-5 teaches that, “...when the fullness of time had come, God sent forth his Son, born of woman, born under the law, to redeem those who were under the law, so that we might receive adoption as sons.” He came into the world to atone for our sins, He was resurrected to eternal life, and He’s alive today. This is what we should celebrate.

“And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people” (Luke 2:10).

Slava Ukraini!

Hope Lives Here: