Monday, September 3, 2012

His Beatitude the Patriarch of Ukrainian Greek Catholics

Solemn Pontifical Divine Liturgy in the Byzantine Rite. Splendor of Worship!

Every Catholic ought to witness this Catholic liturgy.


  1. You have to be very careful with titles like "patriarch." In fact, he is the MAJOR ARCHBISHOP of the Ukrainian Catholic Church. There is a very serious difference. The Ukrainian Catholics call him their "patriarch," but he is not. This is wishful thinking on their part. It would be an ecumenical disaster of untold, unimaginable proportions for the Holy See to designate him a patriarch.

    1. Quite right! Even his title makes it clear that he is metropolitan, not patriarh. You will never see this gentleman in the green mandias and special head gear.

      Mike Forbes+

    2. Who cares if its an ecumenical disaster, Ecumenism is a waste of time. You should see what the Russians mean when they speak of ecumenism, they think they can step all over the Ukrainians. Conversion is the only real ecumenism. Conversion to the One True Church, the One, Roman Catholic and Apostolic Church. Long Live Pope Benedict XVI, and God Bless Sviatoslav Shevchuk.

  2. Writing actually from Ukraine, where I've been for the last fortnight. In every church I've visited, wherever I have sung or concelebrated the Liturgy, including an episcopal ordination, he is referred to as Blazhennishi Patriarch nashii Svyatoslav - our blessed Patriarch Svyatoslav.

    Even if Rome has not yet recognised the title, is this actually necessary? Svyatoslav is head of the largest Eastern Catholic Church.

    Rome, of course, is afraid of recognising his title because the Muscovite Orthodox would go bananas.

    Not that their pedigree is spotless, of course. They broke away uncanonically from the jurisdiction of Constantinople, and for a century were not recognised. The Patriarch of Moscow initially arrogated that title to himself, at the expense of Constantinople.

    Kyiv and the Ukrainian Church were canonically under the jurisdiction of Constantinople. Once the Tsar had got control of Ukraine after 1654 (Act of equal Union, interpreted as Muscovite dominance), in 1686 the Tsar tried to force the Patriarch of Constantinople to give away the Kyivan church to Moscow.

    He refused, and so the Tsar bribed the Turkish Sultan with 200 gold rubles and, I think, sable furs, to put pressure on the Patriarch. The Patriarch caved in, but was condemned by a Sacred Synod in Constantinople the following year for so doing.

    So when Moscow fumes about its "canonical territory", be careful in accepting its claims.

    At one time, most of central Ukraine and Belarus were Greek Catholic, but wherever the Tsar's writ ran, Catholic churches were closed or confiscated, and Catholics forced to break with the Pope and submit to the Moscow Patriarch as Orthodox.

    In any case, most Ukrainian Greek Catholics now live in west Ukraine, in territory which only fell under the baleful shadow of Moscow due to the Molotov-Ribbentrop pact of 1939 - hardly the most moral of political treaties, between Hitler and Stalin to carve up what was then Poland.

    The Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church suffered thousands, if not millions of martyrdoms between 1946 and 1990. Ukrainian Catholics deserve better than to be shoddily treated by Rome just to pacify a Moscow which will never be pacified, short of their total absorption in "Orthodoxy" Moscow-style.

  3. Hooey, he is more a Patriarch than most of the so called Patriarch's which keep warm the Orthodox and Oriental thrones in the East. This is old Cold War Hooey at it's finest. There is no such thing as an ecumenical disaster with the ROC. They will find another (and another and another) stumbling block as long as their given a chance. There is no re-union coming so let the Ukrainian Catholics have a Patriarch which they deserve.

  4. In addition, there's no such thing as a Major Archbishop, does that make every other Archbishop a Minor Archbishop? Explain that to them please....

  5. "They will find another (and another and another) stumbling block as long as their given a chance."

    And the Catholic refusal to reconsider the claims of the Papal Office? How about that? Why is it that when Catholic stick to their doctrinal claims, this is praised as en expression of principle, but when the Orthodox stick to theirs this is considered arrogance?

    Both the Catholic and Orthodox Churches consider themselves to the be the true Church. There is no going around that.