The ceremony of awarding the holy martyr Omelyan Kovch will take place on June 27, 2010, in Lutsk. This decision was passed by the Committee on Honoring the Memory of the Holy Martyr Omelyan Kovch. The head of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church, honorary chairman of the committee, His Beatitude Lubomyr (Husar), will present the distinction to the laureate. On the eve of event the head of the Ukrainian Greek Catholics will arrive in Volyn to participate in the Permanent Synod of the UGCC." />

Holy Martyr Omelyan Kovch to be celebrated in Lutsk

Tuesday, 22 June 2010, 19:52
The ceremony of awarding the holy martyr Omelyan Kovch will take place on June 27, 2010, in Lutsk. This decision was passed by the Committee on Honoring the Memory of the Holy Martyr Omelyan Kovch. The head of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church, honorary chairman of the committee, His Beatitude Lubomyr (Husar), will present the distinction to the laureate. On the eve of event the head of the Ukrainian Greek Catholics will arrive in Volyn to participate in the Permanent Synod of the UGCC.
The ceremony of awarding the holy martyr Omelyan Kovch will take place on June 27, 2010, in Lutsk. This decision was passed by the Committee on Honoring the Memory of the Holy Martyr Omelyan Kovch.  The head of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church, honorary chairman of the committee, His Beatitude Lubomyr (Husar), will present the distinction to the laureate. On the eve of event the head of the Ukrainian Greek Catholics will arrive in Volyn to participate in the Permanent Synod of the UGCC. “Exactly on the examples of acts of such people as Fr. Omelyan Kovch we can talk about the self-expression of the nation in the years of misfortunes,” remarked the distinguished Ukrainian historian, professor at the Kyiv University Volodymyr Sergiychuk, who is a member of the Committee on Honoring the Memory of the Holy Martyr. “In fact we know well the general information from Soviet propaganda, but about the specific acts of sacrifice, unfortunately, we know little.” In 1999 the Jewish council of Ukraine awarded Fr. Omelyan Kovch with the title “Righteous Man of Ukraine.” In 2001 during the pastoral visit to Ukraine Pope John Paul II proclaimed the Ukrainian confessor Omelyan Kovch a holy martyr. The position of openness of Fr. Omelyan toward everybody regardless of national or religious belonging especially showed itself in the difficult time of war. During the German occupation the priest did not tolerate the crimes of the fascists against Jews. He personally rescued Jews from a synagogue that was set on fire in Peremyshliany, in the Lviv region, where he was a Greek Catholic pastor. Without regard to prohibitions of the occupation authorities, the priest baptized persecuted Jews. For this the Gestapo arrested the Ukrainian priest on December 30, 1942, and took him to a Lviv prison. In August 1943 Fr. Omelyan was sent to the Majdanek death camp, which was not far from Lublin, Poland. The priest refused to be liberated from the concentration camp and to his final day ministered the prisoners who belonged to different nationalities and religions. Of the prisoners of the camp he was the only priest. Fr. Omelyan Kovch perished in Majdanek in March 1944. “Representatives of different faiths and nationalities are involved in the activity of our committee,” noted Ivan Vasyunyk, vice chairman of the Committee on Honoring the Memory of Holy Martyr Omelyan Kovch. “From the example of Fr. Omelyan we must understand that every human death is a tragedy for all humanity. Presenting the award to Blessed Omelyan Kovch and the presentation of the committee in Volyn will have a symbolic value.” Background information In a first time the blessed Omelyan Kovch was distinguished was on April 24, 2009. On that day the Blessed Omelyan Kovch was proclaimed the patron of all priests of the UGCC.

Information Department of the UGCC

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