Ukraine has passed a law changing when it celebrates Christmas.
The country will now mark the holy day on Dec. 25, dropping the Russian Orthodox Church’s tradition of celebrating the holiday on Jan. 7.
The bill’s sponsors believe the change will help Ukraine “abandon the Russian heritage of imposing the celebration of Christmas on January 7,” while helping Ukrainians “live their own life with new traditions [and] holidays,” The Guardian reported.
The change was passed by Ukraine’s parliament earlier this month and signed into law Friday by President Volodymyr Zelensky.
The Russian Orthodox Church and its leader, Patriarch Kirill, have notably been a staunch supporter of the war in Ukraine while Kirill has even compared Russian soldiers killed in battle to Jesus Christ.
The Ukrainian sect of the church gained formal independence from Moscow in 2019 to form the Orthodox Church in Ukraine, while Kyiv has continued distancing its cultural and religious ties from Russia.
Ukraine had been under Moscow’s religious leadership since at least the 17th century.
The law signed also moved two other holidays including the Day of Ukrainian Statehood, which was moved from July 28 to July 15, and Defenders Day, which honors veterans, which was swapped from Oct. 14 to Oct. 1.