More Russian Orthodox churches have become conflicted with their leader Patriarch Kirill for supporting Russian President Vladimir Putin's war against Ukraine.

CBS News reported how Kirill criticized the influences of the Western world particularly - its "excess consumption" and "gay pride parades" in his sermon last March. He also shared his sentiments on the Ukraine war, saying "We're talking about human salvation."

Father Cyrill Hovorun, who was ordained by Kirill and was his theological advisor until 2012, believed that the church has been the "main supplier of the ideology, Putin's ideology." He noted, "This war has a simple formula: War equals guns plus ideas, and the guns are, of course, supplied by the Kremlin and the ideas come from the church."

Hovorun claimed that Putin regarded this as a "Sacred operation: A mission from God to purge the world from, you know, impurity of the Western ideas and Western values." He said that he protested the emerging ideology when he was still working in the Moscow patriarchate.

Andre Sinitsyn, a churchgoer and believer in Moscow, favors his parish split with the Russian Orthodox Church. He said, "Patriarch Kirill got too close to the government." For him, "It's unacceptable," and he believed that "The church should be independent" from the state.

Sergei Chapnin, who also worked for Kirill, claimed that "He [Kirill] has a financial interest in his cooperation with the state, just like other oligarchs." According to him, Russia's church served as a state propaganda machine that spreads "Putin's message as the defender of conservative values against a morally corrupt West."

"The main motivation for Patriarch Kirill is power and influence," he also said. "But because of the war, he loses it."

Kirill refused to condemn the invasion of Ukraine, despite repeated pleas from Pope Francis, other Orthodox Church leaders, and more recently from the World Council of Churches, The Irish Times reported.

Last April, 400 clergymen of the Ukrainian Church under the jurisdiction of the Patriarchate of Moscow appealed together to the Council of the Primates of the Ancient Eastern Churches against Kirill for preaching doctrines of the "Russian world," which differs from Orthodox teaching and should be "condemned as a heresy."

One clergy wrote, "We are witnessing the brutal actions of the Russian army against the Ukrainian people, which are approved by Patriarch Kirill. As clergymen of the Church and as simple Christians, we have always been and always will be with our people, with those who suffer and need help. We fully support the Ukrainian state authorities and the Armed Forces of Ukraine in their fight against the aggressor."

A University of Münster Professor Thomas Bremer, who teaches Eastern Churches Studies, told Al Jazeera, "Today, the real schism seems to be between the Russian Orthodox Church and its [remaining] branch in Ukraine, the Ukrainian Orthodox Church."

"After the war, the Russian Orthodox Church will probably lose a large share of its faithful in Ukraine, as they feel betrayed by the Patriarch," he added.