Until Ukraine has the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church, the mystical body of the risen Christ, it will not die

Wednesday, 21 August 2019, 01:01
Today, we may face even more difficult trials. But rest assured, as long as Ukraine has the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church, the body of the Transfigured and Risen Christ, it will not die.

This was stated by the Father and Head of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church, His Beatitude Sviatoslav, during a sermon to the faithful in Old Sambir (Lviv region) during the Hierarchical Liturgy on the occasion of celebrating the UGCC's coming out from the underground.

"Our hardships only make our voice in the world louder, and the testimony of our faith becomes clearer. Enemies come and go, and the Church of Christ, the resurrected transformed body of the Savior, remains forever. It will be so if today we hear the voice of the Father: 'This is my beloved Son. Listen to Him!'"

Today, the Church of Christ celebrates one of the greatest feasts of the liturgical year - the Feast of the Transfiguration of the Lord.

 ... To celebrate today the Transfiguration of the Lord means to be filled with the power of the risen Christ in our daily lives. That power shows us the ability not to run away from difficulties, but to overcome them.

According to the spiritual leader of the Ukrainians, the faithful came together in Old Sambir to thank the Lord God for the gift of freedom of the Church, for the gift of the 30th anniversary of the complete escape from the underground, the legalization of the UGCC in her native land.

His Beatitude Sviatoslav drew a parallel of a handful of people of our Church with a biblical stone, which the prophet Daniel saw break away from the mountain of the Blessed Virgin Mary and strike at the feet of that giant communist regime, which, it turned out, stood on clay feet.

“ Today we want to thank the Lord God for keeping a handful of the faithful among our people: bishops, priests, monks, nuns, our good peasants, workers, intellectuals who were not afraid to go to the Lord's mountain in times of communist darkness,” said the preacher.

He recalled that this transformation began when underground Greek Catholics ceased to fear in 1987. In August 1987, for the first time, under the guidance of Bishop Pavlo Vasylyk, our priests and faithful declared that they were going out of the underground. Our Church appeared in 1988 when we celebrated the 1000th anniversary of the Baptism of Rus'-Ukraine. But in all its beauty, the face of our Church shone in 1989, when the communist regime recognized the victory of our Church.

"I hope you remember that glorious photo of spring 1989, when our underground bishops, priests march on Red Square. Later, historians will call this march on Arbat 'a parade of the victory of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church over Communism.' Was this not a wonderful power of transformation?!" asked the preacher.

The Head of the UGCC especially thanked all those who carried on their shoulders the suffering body of the persecuted underground Church. And then, as the apostles at Tabor, they witnessed its glory and resurrection.

The UGCC Department for Information


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