On 10 January 2023, a Facebook user made a publication that a petition to canonise Joe Biden was uploaded on the website of Metropolitan Epiphanius, Head of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church. According to the publication, the petition, which was signed by 867 people, was suggested by Metropolitan Epiphanius. The publication also includes a screenshot from the change.org website.
The change.org website, shown in the photograph, is a non-commercial platform which allows submitting petitions on any issue from across the world. Any individual can create petition at change.org. However, the website reserves the right to remove such petitions which go against the platform’s terms of services and contain elements of fraud, libel and inciting violence. If the number of signatures for a petition at change.org reaches its maximum, this means that the petition has been successful. However, this does not automatically mean that it will definitely be implemented in practice. It is the target of the petition which is ultimately responsible for making final decisions of whether or not to take measures vis-à-vis the petition’s demand.
In accordance with the photograph included in the publication, Polina Kolko created a petition on the change.org website under the title Proclaim Biden Among the Saints (Зарахувати Байдена до лику святих). The petition is addressed to Metropolitan Epiphanius of Kyiv and Ukraine. The petition has this description: “US President Joe Biden did a lot for Ukraine and its citizens. Hundreds and thousands of weapons were sent to protect our borders and peace. Therefore, I propose canonising him as a saint and adding his name to the list of saints of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church.” Currently, this petition is no longer available on the website. However, irrespective of the authenticity of the petition, the photograph clearly shows that it was not created by Metropolitan Epiphanius. Therefore, a Facebook user’s claim that a petition to canonise Joe Biden was proposed by Metropolitan Epiphanius is not true. In addition, neither the official Facebook nor Twitter pages of Metropolitan Epiphanius feature statements of such content.
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