His Beatitude Sviatoslav: "From today all the Universal Church calls the Metropolitan Andrey Sheptytsky the righteous"

Monday, 20 July 2015, 11:47
Pope Francis signed the decree, which proclaimed the heroic virtues of Metropolitan Andrey Sheptytsky for the whole world. So on the eve of the pilgrimage to Zarvanytsya the most important stage of His praise has been completed. From today the entire Universal Church calls him righteous and urges all to imitate his virtues.

This was said during a sermon to the faithful in Zarvanytsya by the Father of the UGCC His Beatitude Sviatoslav.

The Primate noted that this year's Ukrainian pilgrimage to Zarvanytsya was also dedicated to the great figures in the history of our Church - a person known to contemporaries as St.George's mountain’s mighty. "Today we remember especially in prayer the Great servant of God, Metropolitan Andrey Sheptytskyi. In ten days we are commemorating the 150th anniversary of His birth", - said the Bishop.

Who was and who is for us, this Grand Metropolitan Andrei? "I think - He says - no one word to describe the greatness of this person. But we can confidently say that all the content, all the value that we are investing in the concept of Ukrainian and Greek Catholic, are filled with the spirit and wisdom of Metropolitan Andrey Sheptytskyi".

His Beatitude Sviatoslav supposes that Pope Francis, signed a decree by which He proclaimed heroic virtues of Metropolitan Andrey Sheptytskyi for the whole world, made a "special gift to us, Greek Catholics, Ukrainians".

According to the Primate of the Church, Andrey Sheptytskyi led his people and his faithful, as ethnarch of Ukrainian people and the father of His Church through two world wars. "All His prayer, all His work can be summarized in three key points: unity, holiness and faith in God. He worked all His life for the unity of the Ukrainian people, who was then partitioned between different empires. He worked and prayed for the unity of the Ukrainian Church, for He was convinced that without the unity of the church we cannot get our social unity. He urged his people to heroic virtues, which He embodied in His life. He called them to be holy, because only then they can be good citizens and responsible builders of the state. But most of all He taught people to believe in God", - said His Beatitude Sviatoslav.

He recalled that Metropolitan Andrey had a special relationship to this holy place - Zarvanytsya. "Metropolitan - said the Head of the Church - built up Zarvanytsya. More than once He came here. He left for us a unique memory of His pilgrimage visit to Zarvanytsya. Metropolitan left one work, which is called "Memo from Zarvanytsya", which in itself is a model of good examination of conscience for confession, because He taught His people that the basic condition of good pilgrimage is a good confession and Holy Communion. These are the sources from which you can be renewed, strengthened by God's grace. These are the moments when God touches a person and heals from the sins".

His Beatitude Sviatoslav marked Metropolitan Andrey’s love to the Virgin Mary. "During the hard times he saw the future, he had the inner vision of the faith, with which He could see what would happen with the native people later. We know that even on His deathbed, when His eyes were closing, He saw our future. And announced His prophecy: Ukraine will rise from its fall after the great destruction. Peace, harmony, high culture will reign in it, but we must pray, the Lord God and the Mother of God will take care of Ukrainian people. And this, perhaps, He now pleads before the throne of the Most High"- said the Head of the Church at the end.

UGCC Department of Information 

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