Priest knocked to ground as brawl breaks out in church in surreal video

This is the bizarre moment a priest is shoved to the floor and then begins throwing wild punches when a brawl suddenly erupts between clergy members in a church.

The unseemly incident took place in the Church of the Nativity of Christ, an Orthodox church in the southern Ukrainian city of Odessa and was recorded by a horrified onlooker from an upper balcony.

In the video, a group of churchgoers and clergy members can be seen in the church when two women begin fighting.

A man in a purple robe then appears to try to break up the fight but he is shoved to the floor by another man, with people heard screaming and shouting in the background.

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He springs to his feet and begins to swing his fists while other clergymen begin shoving each other and ornaments are knocked to the ground.

The fight was triggered when an abbot became angry with the newly-elected Bishop of the Odessa Orthodox Church, who ordered for the abbot to be fired, according to reports in local media.

It is not clear if any punishments have been handed out by church officials as a result of the incident, but people have been quick to air their opinions on social media.

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Sounding outraged, a commentator wrote: “These Ukrainian priests keep nothing sacred! Shame on you!”

A second viewer said: “And these are the people who tell us how to be united?!

"They don’t even have solidarity in their own church! How dare they teach others how to live?!”

This comes after a shocking video showed how a portrait of the Virgin Mary was pelted with stones in a church after an alleged drug user became enraged that she hadn't performed a miracle for him.

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