Tuesday 31 December 2013

Controversies over the Bishopric of Halych

It is very difficult to find an adequate explanation of the Ruthenian-Ukrainian episcopal title of Halych. I had planned to write an article on the confused identity of this bishopric on the occasion of the creation of multiple Greek-Catholic metropolitan-archeparchies in Ukraine. However, most of my time was taken up with Nykyta Budka research.  In the meantime, I came across a Vatican translation which referred to Sviatoslav Shevchuk as “Major Archbishop of Kyiv and Galicia.” Although I congratulated the service for following the Ukrainian government directive that city names be transliterated from Ukrainian and not from the commonly accepted Russian forms (Ukr. "Kyiv" as opposed to Russian "Kiev"), I pointed out that, in no way could Shevchuk be titled archbishop of “Galicia.” To my correction I received a courteous response stating that an official Ukrainian Catholic source had provided this rendering of “Верховний Архиєпископ Києво-Галицький.

My maternal great-grandparents immigrated to Canada in 1907 from what today is western Ukraine. I remember my grandmother often reminiscing that Angliky (Anglophone Canadians) used to call the early Ukrainian immigrants “Galicians” or even “garlic Galicians.” This derogatory appellative undoubtedly referred to the fact that Anglos were unfamiliar with the pungent odor of garlic, which Ukrainian settlers generously used in their cuisine.  In late nineteenth and early twentieth-century correspondence, we often find Canadian churchmen using “Galician” to refer to Ukrainian and sometimes to Polish immigrants from a province of the Habsburg Monarchy of Austria-Hungary known officially as “Galicia.”

The English form “Galicia” derrives from “Galitia,” the Latin chancery form of the German “Galizien.”  Toward the end of the 18th century, not wanting to unilaterally annex the entire Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth, Tsarist Russia was able to enlist the collusion of Prussia and Austria, each of which agreed to accept a portion of Polish territory.  The Catholic Empress-Queen Maria Theresa is recorded as having had strong scruples about stealing lands from the Polish king.  Regarding such protests, her archrival and fellow partitioner, Fredrick the Great of Prussia, mockingly observed, “The more she weeps the more she takes.”

Outright annexation has always been frowned upon.  Today invaders might use a political paradigm such as “liberation” or “spreading democracy,” but in the eighteenth century a dynastic solution was in order.  The principalities, duchies and counties of a given territory were transferred from the feudal lordship of one sovereign to another. Russia, which got the bulk of Poland-Lithuania, dethroned the king of Poland altogether and the Tsarina assumed the crown of Poland for herself and her successors.  Prussia got a few duchies in the west but under what guise could the heterogeneous portion be included into Austrian lands?  Imperial chancellor, Prince Kaunitz, was charged with finding a solution. The Habsburgs had been hereditary kings of Hungary since 1527 and Kaunitz researched the historical claims of that particular crown.

In enlisting the expertise of Greek-Catholic priest-historian Mykhaylo Harasevych, Kaunitz reasoned that the territories partitioned were more-or-less those of the ancient Rus (Ruthenian) principalities Halych and Volodymyr. As the Mongols extended their control of Kyivan-Rus lands, Halych passed under Hungarian suzerainty from 1214–1221 and was conquered by King Casmir the Great in 1349.  Under Poland the area was known as the wojewódstwo ruskie (Ruthenian Palatinate or Duchy). But given fact that Pope Innocent IV had sent a royal crown to Prince Danylo of Halych in 1253, it was decided that the territory could be appropriately denoted Königreiche Galizien und Lodomerien (Kingdom of Galicia and Lodomeria). And the new hereditary king was Maria Theresa’s son and co-ruler Josef II, who was sent to three times in the 1780s to visit and inspect the new province, whose capital Lemberg (Lviv) had been named after Danylo’s son.

Governed by Austria until the end of the First World War, Galicia contained a multi-ethnic population of Ukrainians, Poles, Jews, Germans and Armenians.  The western half (eventually including Krakow) was mainly Polish, while the eastern part was predominantly Ukrainian in the countryside.  The cities were dominated by the Polish elites. From November 1918 to July 1919 Ukrainians fought to establish a western Ukrainian state in Eastern Galicia but by July 1919 the stronger Polish forces had defeated them and incorporated the territory (albeit provisorialy until 1923) into the Second Polish Republic, which renamed it Małopolska Wschodnia (Eastern Little Poland).  In 1939 the occupying Soviets staged a plebiscite to join the Ukrainian SSR, a move made permanent in 1945.

Arms of Galicia and Lodomeria
The term “Galicia” is widely known in historical publications but relatively unknown among Ukrainians today. When referring to the territory and even to the Austrian province, they generally used the Ukrainian rendering Halychyna.  Having been brought up on John-Paul Himka’s articles on the Ukrainians in Austrian Galicia, I was surprised and amused when one Greek-Catholic priest took exception to my use of the term, claiming that, even in English, the territory should be called Halychyna because the name Galicia applies to a province of Spain.

Confusion between the terms Galicia and Halych continued long after Austrian Galicia had ceased to exist politically.  Ukrainians who had been forcefully incorporated into the Polish State after 1920 were reluctant to use the term “Little Poland” to refer to the provinces of Lviv, Stanyslaviv, and Ternopil, and so they continued to refer to the territory as Halychyna. Along side this appellative, the Halytska mytropolia (Metropolitan See of Halych) continued to exist and the Halytskyi mytropolyt was looked upon not merely as a religious leader but also as a national leader (ethnarch) by the stateless Ukrainians.

In view of Ukrainian resistance, the Polish Government sought to limit the influence of the Greek-Catholic Church, in particular the church's primate, Halytsky Mytropolyt Andrey Sheptytsky.  In 1921 the government sacked its first envoy to the Holy See and appointed Count Wladysław Skrzyński, Sheptytsky’s own cousin, who was tasked with taking a harder line against Ukrainian interests in the Vatican. After failing to achieve Sheptytsky's removal, Skrzyński engineered a compromise which allowed the metropolitan to return to Lviv, and was rewarded with by being named ambassador proper to the Holy See when the Polish legation was raised to the rank of a full embassy in 1925.

Poland had achieved independence and had consolidated is territory largely due to the efforts of Marshall Józef Piłsudski, who had taken power by a military coup in November 1918.  From then until the first presidential elections of 1922, Piłsudski acted as interim head of state, after which he retired from the political scene.  However, after four years of weak government, parliamentary factionalism, and economic woe, in May 1926 Piłsudski emerged from retirement and staged a second coup, establishing an authoritarian, semi-parliamentary regime over which he was de facto dictator. This hybrid political experiment proved to be a failure and in June 1930 the opposition parties called for the abolition of the dictatorship.  Piłsudski retaliated by disbanding parliament, arresting, imprisoning, and torturing the opposition, which included Ukrainian parliamentarians. 

After dealing with his Polish opponents, Piłsudski gave orders to crush Ukrainian opposition.  In response to raids on Polish landowners by the OUN (Organization of Ukrainian Nationalists). Piłsudski ordered a massive counterattack in the form of a bloody “Pacification” campaign.  Police detachments were raided hundreds of Ukrainian villages and demolished buildings. The nationally conscious Greek-Catholic clergy were not spared in and even Sheptytsky’s auxiliary, Bishop Ivan Buchko, was mistreated and prevented from carrying out pastoral visitations.  Despite protests from around the world including censure from the British and Canadian Parliaments, the infamous “Pacification” lasted into 1931, with the regime assigning collective responsibility to the entire Ukrainian people for OUN attacks.  

In 1930 Sheptytsky traveled to Warsaw in an attempt to personally meet with Marshall Piłsudski. The metropolitan sought to convince the dictator that harsh measures against the Ukrainians would only result in gains for both the OUN and communist radicals.  Unfortunately the request for an audience was refused and the regime made several provocative gestures against the Ukrainian primate, convinced that he was behind Ukrainian political opposition. The first incident occured when police raided the metropolitan’s orphanage on the very evening when he received the Polish Primate, Cardinal Hlond. A pastoral letter issued by Sheptytsky and his fellow bishops was later confiscated, in contravention of the Concordat’s stipulations.

The same pastoral letter gave rise to Polish complaints to the Vatican regarding Sheptytsky’s title. On 28 May 1931, Ambassador Skrzyński dispatched a note to Cardinal Pacelli, Secretary of State to Pius XI, complaining that Sheptytsky was using the title “Metropolita Halicki.” Skrzyński noted that, according to Article IX B of the Concordat, he was listed only as “Archbishop of the Greek-Catholic Rite and of the Archdiocese of Lwów,” and that use of the other was intended for “purely political ends.”

Cardinal Pacelli forwarded the complaint to the competent Vatican department, the Congregation for the Eastern Church, but the department’s staff were unable to find legal arguments for the title’s use in their records (This Oriental Congregation was a relitively new department and so it’s archival materials did not extend further back than 1862).  On 16 June, the Congregation’s head, Cardinal Luigi Sincero, enlisted two of his expert advisors (consulters), Father Cyrille Korolevskij and Monsignor Enrico Benedetti. The following is a translation of Korolevskij’s report, explaining the origins and use of the title of Halych:

The Ruthenian Hierarchy of the so-called Little Poland traces its origins from the Kievan Metropolia of the patriarchate of Constantinople. This was the only metropolia to which they belonged since the conversion of  the Ruthenians to Christianity (from the XII–XIII centuries divided into two branches, Great Russians and Little Russians known today as Ukrainians).
The first document in which we can obtain a reliable list of the suffragan sees of Kiev is the Record of Manuel I Comnenus, published a little after 1170, in which there are eleven bishoprics, among which is that of Halych.
Halych was raised to metropolitan rank perhaps already in 1303 and for sure by 1345, at the request of the local princes, when the Kievan metropolitan, after the conquest and burning of Kiev by Mongol invaders (Tatars) in 1299, went to live in Vladimir on the Klazma and later to Moscow. At the request of the Metropolitan of Kiev Teognost and the Grand Prince of Moscow Simeon Ioanovych Gordij, this erection was annulled by the Byzantine Emperor John VI Paleologus and this annulment was confirmed by Patriarch Isidore I in September 1347.
After the Lithuanians had conquered Kiev and Podolia, in the first half of the 14th century, the Lithuanian King Olgherd obtained in 1355 from Patriarch Philoteus I Koskinos a special metropolitan see for all the Lithuanian domains. This metropolia lasted until 1419, the year during which the eparchies that made up returned under the Metropolitan of Kiev, still resident in Moscow.  Halych and Leopolis belonged to this metropolia or ceased to belong to according to political viscidities.
Thus, when the Polish King Casmir III the Great had conquered Galicia from the Mongol-Tatars in 1362, he again obtained from the same Patriarch Philoteus in 1371 that Antonii, the bishop of Halych, became a metropolitan and had for suffragans all the Ruthenians bishops of Casmir’s domains.  In case the patriarch refused, the king threatened to re-baptize all the Ruthenians as Latins.  Halych received as its suffragan sees Kholm, Turov, Peremysl and Vladimir Volynsk. No mention was made of Leopolis because that bishopric did not exist until 1540, when it was established by the Kievan Metropolitan Makarii II.
After the death of Antonii in 1380, the metropolia of Halych had no bishop and was administered by one of the suffragan bishops with the title of patriarchal exarch, either from the Greek Archbishop of Bethlehem or by the Metropolitan of Kiev by means of a vicar.  This situation lasted until 1412, after which, for a second time, the metropolia of Halych ceased to exist.  Halych did not even continue as a bishopric and, in the meantime, in 1595 the second and definitive union with Rome occurred (The first lasted from  about 1439 to 1517 but has no bearing here.)
In 1626, the Catholic metropolitan of Kiev, Yosyf Veliamin Rutsky, wanted to obtain a coadjutor with the right of succession, chose the priest-monk Rafail Korsak and obtained for the latter the royal nomination to the bishopric of Halych.  He believed that he could do this, as for all of his other suffragans, without the intervention of Rome, in virtue of Clement VIII’s bull Decet Romanum Pontificem of 23 February 1596, which confirmed the rights and privileges of the Metropolitan of Kiev.  Being that this pertained to a coadjutor and future successor, The Sacred Congregation De Propaganda Fide did not consider it necessary to obtain a dispensation from of the Holy See.  In fact, confirmation of the nomination occurred [without an special decree] in the papal Consistory of 31 July 1628.
In 1631, since Rutsky wanted the See of Halych to remain joined to the Metropolia of Kiev in the person of Korsak after he had suceeeded as metropolitan, until the latter chose for himself a coadjutor upon whom he would confer the same title of Halych.  It was then judged necessary a new proposition in Consistory and a the dispatch of a new papal bull.  In the following year 1632, Korsak also became Bishop of Pinsk and soon listed in documents only as Bishop of Pinsk.  Metropolitan Rutsky died on 5 February 1637 and Korsak succeeded him, but the latter himself died suddenly in Rome in 1640 without having chosen a coadjutor.  As far as I know, the Church (See) of Halych was no longer mentioned but the fact remained that, from 1631, the episcopal see of Halych was united to the metropolitan see of Kiev.
The entire story had been completely forgotten and the documents buried in archival dust when, from 1774, discussions began for establishing a metropolia separate from Kiev for the Ruthenian eparchies that had passed under Austrian rule after the partition of Poland. It was the Ruthenian bishops of Austria that petitioned Pius VII to re-establish the ancient metropolitan see of Halych.  In order to do so, they needed to prove the ancient existence of that metropolia, and it was not deemed to be a good idea to base it on the decrees of non-Catholic patriarchs.  Thus they invoked the bull of [the anti-pope] John XXIII dated the V before the calends of September in the third year of his reign (= 28 August 1412), by which “antequam sedem Haliciensem transferret in metropolitanam sub invocatione Beatae Mariae Viriginis, tunc fuerat erecta (= Leopoliensis cathedralis ecclesia) ac deinceps ad simplicis episcopalis Ecclesiae statum redacta.” 
Yet the bull of John XXIII was not issued for the Ruthenian see but for the Latin diocese. How such a mistake could be made, has to be attributed to either a complete ignorance of history, easily explained in this period, or in the usual craftiness of the Austrian Imperial Chancellery and of the excessively-praised Ruthenian Canon Mykhaylo Harasevych.  The fact is that, despite an illusion to the union of the See of Halych to that of Kiev, something that only happened in the case of the Ruthenian see (the Latin diocese of Kiev has always been a simple bishopric and never an archbishopric or metropolitan see), the entire bull of Pius VII, In universalis Ecclesiae regimine of 22 March 1807 which reestablishes the Ruthenian Metropolia of Halych, is based on the bull of John XXIII issued for the Latin dioceses.
Whatever the case may be, it is necessary here to apply to law the theological principle that, even a dogmatic definition can be historically or theologically inexact, but that the definition itself is still true. In 1807 Pius VII established a Ruthenian metropoitanate of Halych and, at the same time, applied to the Ruthenian see of Lviv an archiepiscopal title which was considered very old but which, in reality, had never existed as such, only as a Latin archdiocese.
Thus it can be explained why today, Metropolitan Andrey Sheptytsky may sign “Metropolitan of Halych, Archbishop Lviv.” I believe that, until now, no one has ever noticed the confusion: the editors of the introduction of the Schematism of the Ruthenian Archparchy of Lviv, as can be seen in add the editors anterior to the [First World] War, base themselves on the bull, In universalis Ecclesiae, on an event which took place in 1412 but which did not pertain to the Ruthenians.
He also signs “Bishop of Kamenets-Podolsk”.  It’s not completely certain that a Ruthenian bishopric existed in the Middle Ages in Kamenets, a city founded in the 13th century, a commercial centre and thus soon populated by all sorts of people: Russians, Ruthenians, Poles, Armenians, Jews, Tatars.  Only one of the old Russian chronicles speaks of a Bishop of Kamenets, whom it does not name.  The non-Catholic Orthodox eparchy was not established before 1798.  I saw a quantity of Ruthenian documents dated before 1808: but I don’t even remember seeing in the any sort of title of Kamenets used by a Ruthenian bishop of Lviv. And Michael Harasevych, provost of the Ruthenian Chapter of Lviv and great collector of Ruthenian documents, who put this title back into use, which is demonstrated in the speeches given on the occasion of the first Metropolitan of Halych after the restoration by  Pius VII, Antonii Anhelovych.  Since that time, all the metropolitans have also added to their titles that of Kamenets.
Even the listing of the titles of this metropolitante varied.  In a pastoral letter of 1840, Mykhaylo Levytsky, later cardinal, took the titles of  Metropolita Ruthenorum unitorum Haliciensis, Archiepiscopus Leopoliensis Episcopus Camenecensis.  Ad in another pastoral of 1841 (the old-slavonic version) which I have before me, used the version: Archbishop and Metropolitan of Lvov and of Halych of the Ruthenians United to the Church of Rome.” In 1855 he signed the pastoral letter promulgating the bull Ineffabilis in this way: Metropolita Haliciensis, Archiepiscopus Leopoliensis, Episcopus Kamenecensis.  And thenceforth all his successors have done so, including Metropolitan Sheptytsky.
This is not the first time that Metropolitan Sheptytsky has used the sole title of Metropolitan of Halych.  He does it when he writes pastoral letters of a general theme addressed either to the entire ecclesiastical province or to the Ruthenians of Canada (it is known that before the nomination of the Ruthenian Bishop of Canada, he was very concerned to preserve the faith of the Ruthenian emigrants, and who could blame him?).  I have a few examples, one from 1902, the first of its kind translated into Polish.
Now I move to the question inquiry.  After the Concordat of 1925... It is evident to whomever objectively reads point B of Article IX of the said Concordat that this point is not about titles but rather represents a simple list of dioceses (or eparchies) of the three rites in Poland according to French terminology which is the language of the Concordat.  If it were not thus, it would be necessary also to prohibit the Ruthenian Bishop of  Przemysl from entitling himself, as he continues to do, “Bishop of Przemysl, Sanok, and Sambor,”  because that is more-or-less the ancient usage, as the last two titles do not appear in the Concordat.  Throughout the world, bishops use titles more or less long, which recall suppressed sees or historical memories, etc.  Such titles are never listed in concordats because those deal with geographical divisions, not titles.
Does the qualification “ “Metropolitan of Halych” have a political meaning?  I really don’t think so because it did not have any such meaning in 1902 nor in the years following.  Therefore I believe that this [complaint] is simply a ruse to vex Sheptytsky. The Metropolitan’s situation is very sad indeed!...
At present, the Ruthenian Ecclesiastical Province of Halych is immediately subject to the Roman Pontiff: not as its ordinary metropolitan (because it has never been part of the patriarchate of Rome) but rather that of Constantinople; nor as an autocephalous metropolitan, because it has suffragan sees and because it has never been autocephalous.  It is an authentic autonomous archbishopric with patriarchal jurisdiction.  Although, at present, it has only a single ecclesiastical province, according to the constitution of the Eastern Church, one day it could also have others subject to it.
Kyr Sheptytsky is both archbishop and metropolitan together: as archbishop he presides over an autonomous Church, distinct from the other Churches of the Byzantine Rite.  In addition, he also has a suffragan ecclesiastical province of Halych with two bishoprics of Przemysl and Stanislaviv, just as the Archbishop of Ocrida had... as the Archbishop of Cyprus and other ancient bishoprics of  Nova Justiniana which have vanished.
Therefore, the proper titular protocol for Sheptytsky, even when he writes to the entire ecclesiastical province, should be “Archbishop of Lviv, Metropolitan of Halych.” There is no need to mention the bishopric of Kamenets because, in eastern terminology, when a bishopric is suppressed it is not longer mentioned.  But all this was unknown to Canon Mykhaylo Harasevych as it continues to be to the Ruthenians today.

Андрей шептицький Митрополит Галицький
[Korolevskij missed another title used by at least one Halych Metropolitan.  In 1856, Metropolitan Levytsky wrote a letter announcing his elevation to the cardinalte which began thus:

Michael Lewicki, Dei et Apostolicae Sedis Gratia Sacrae Romanae Ecclesiae Presbyter Cardinalis, Metropolita Haliciensis, Archiepiscopus Leopoliensis, Episcopus Kamenecensis, Sacrae Caesareo-Regiae et Apostolicae Majestatis actualis intimus Consiliarius, insignis Ordinis Leopoldi Magnae Crucis Eques, Rengorum Galiciae et Lodomiriae Primas, Sacrae Theologiae Doctor etc. Venerablili Clero saeculari et regulari ac fideli populo Hierarchiae Metropolitanae ritus gr. cath. Haliciensis et Archipraesuleam Benedictionem! (Harasevych, Annales, p. 1181)  Perhaps Harasevych also invented the title "primate of the Kingdoms of Galicia and Lodomeria,"since it is not found in the official church or state documents pertaining to Levytsky's elevation.

In addition, Korolevskij's disdain for title of Kamianets-Podilsk is somewhat ironic since, when he was first accepted under the metropolitan’s canonical jurisdiction, Sheptytsky ascribed him under the title of the Eparchy of Kamianets, which Metropolitan Andrey had been using as a legal precedent to engage in missionary actibvity in the Tsarist Empire. In any case, it had been one of the dorment eparchies listed in the extraordinary secret faculties granted Sheptytsky by Pius X in 1907.]

           Monsignor Benedetti added the following interesting historical data:
After the Principality of Halych was conquered by the Poles, all the Greek bishops were soon expelled and their cathedrals were occupied by Latin bishops. (Gregorio XI Id. Febr. 1375) Later, considering that Halych was remote and undefended, the metropolitan see was transferred to Lviv (John XXIII, 28 August 1412). The Orthodox Ruthenians lost their own bishops and passed under the Latin Metropolitan of Halych and Lviv, who exercised his jurisdiction via a vicar protopresbyter nominated for him by the [Orthodox] Metropolitan of Kiev who had added to his own title that of Metropolitan of Halych.
But taking into account the difficulties which the Orthodox priests encountered in making the long journey to Kiev to be ordained, Zygmunt I, King of Poland, in 1539 reestablished a Greek bishopric in Lviv “ut a Metropolitano suo Kioviensi ad dignitatem Vladicatus insignitus, possit... omnia quae ad ritum fidei eorum pertinere videbuntur administrare... nei distretti Haliciensi Leopoliensi, Camenecensi, Snyatinensi, Trembowliensi...” Certainly the erection of this bishopric cannot be considered to have been canonical but its illegitimacy does not change the fact of its existance. Thus the current Ruthenian bishopric of Lviv, Halych and Kamianets originated with Zygmunt I.
From the documents that we have until the beginning of the XIX century, the bishops of Lviv were simply entitled “Bishop of Lviv, Halych and Kamianets Podilsk.”  At the Synod of Zamost (1720) Atanasii Sheptytsky signed the acts with the formula “Athanasius Szeptycki Episcopus Leopoliensis, Haliciensis et Camenariensis Podoliae.”  It is known that Bishop Gedeon Balaban of Lviv and the bishop of Peremysl did not sign the act of union.

On 6 August 1931 the Nuncio to Poland, Francesco Marmaggi, added his opinion that the title was legitimate, despite any confusion regarding its origins, and that the concordat was not competent to alter such titles.  He noted, in fact, that the title “Primate of Poland” is not listed in the concordat, despite its use by the Archbishop of Gniezno and Poznan.

In Cardinal Sincero’s audience with Pius XI of 25 August, based on the Congregation’s research, the Pope decided to instruct Sheptytsky, so as to avoid conflicts with the Polish government, never to use the title “Metropolitan of Halych” on its own but after “Archbishop of Lviv.”

As a piece of historical trivia and perhaps an impetus for further research, it may be noted that, in 1774 Austrian officials did not chose the Ruthenian form Halych for the name of their new kingdom, but "Galicia," certainly closer to Polish usage but perhaps also the form borne by Hungarian monarchs. On the other hand, inn 1807 the papal chancery used the Ruthenian form Haliciensis in transferring and re-creating the metropolitan see. The different forms indicate that, despite their common origins, church and statesmen intended Halych and Halychyna to be two very different things.  This being said, both laymen and clerics sometimes crossed the lines between politics and religion, making 'Halych' and 'Galich' synonymous.

In his efforts to establish the Ukrainian patriarchate, Sheptytsky’s successor, Cardinal Yosyf Slipyj (1892–1984, metropolitan from 1944) had his seals inscribed “Patriarch of Kyiv-Halych and Bishop of Kamianets Podilsk. When the Ukrainian Greek-Catholic Church first emerged from the underground, some tension arose between the Archeparchy of Lviv, which was united to the Halych metropolia, and the Eparchy of Ivano-Frankivsk, in which territory the insignificant city of Halych was located.  With the return of the primatial see to Kyiv in 2004,  the title of Halych was re-united with that of Kyiv. In turn, in 2011, the bishoprics of Lviv and Ivano-Frankivsk, among others, were raised to metropolitan sees.

Friday 8 November 2013

Holodomor - Death by Famine. 80th Anniversary Commemorated in Rome

From 11 through 24 November, the City of Rome officially commemorates the 80th anniversary of the Holodomor, an artificial famine imposed by Stalin on Ukraine and other parts of the Soviet Union.  A list of events may be found here on the city's website.

Among the events being held, on 21 November 2013 a scholarly conference took place at Rome's City Hall (Campidoglio) with the participation of the City, the Ukrainian Ambassador to Italy, and the Apostolic Visitor for Ukrainians in Italy.

I presented a lecture entitled "La Santa Sede e il Holodomor nell'Archivio Segreto Vaticano ed altre fonti della Sede Apostolica Romana" (The Holy See and Holodomor in the Vatican Secret Archives and other archives of the Roman Apostolic See. This lecture was structured as follows:

Gli Archivi della Sede Apostolica – I fondi archiviali - I documenti custoditi in Vaticano sull’Holodomor - Compendio storico vaticano sul Holodomor - La raccolta delle informazioni - Il coordinamento dei sussidi erogati in denaro; gli interventi diplomatici - Lo sforzo di lanciare una missione di soccorso.

A Ukrainian article on the confernece was published in Radio Svoboda.

Interviews of the participants and video coverage was done by Rome Reports.
Here are links to past interviews by myself an my co-editor on our book, The Holy See and the Holodomor: Documents from the Vatican Secret Archives Concerning the Great Famine of 1932–1933 in Soviet Ukraine.

Tuesday 1 October 2013

Bishop Budka Biography

A Life of Obedience, Work, and Love

God's Martyr, History's Witness, the first complete historical biography of Bishop Nykyta Budka, is about to be published by the Ukrainian Catholic Eparchy of Edmonton in conjunction with the Metropolitan Andrey Sheptytsky Institute of Eastern Christian Studies.  

Copies of the 600+ page book, containing numerous photographs, will be available for purchase from the Edmonton Eparchy at the cost of CAD $25. 

"With this publication, the name and life of Blessed Bishop Nykyta Budka will find their proper place in the history of Ukrainians in Canada, in Canadian Catholic history, and in the history of Ukraine."  – Dr. Stella Hryniuk, Forward 

Below is an abridged version of the table of contents:

Archival and Published Sources - Terminology - Division - Abbreviations

Historical Importance – Genesis of the Book – Specifics to Church History – Commendation from the Vatican Congregation for the Eastern Churches

Chapter 1. Pastoral Care for Ukrainians in North America
Immigration to the United States and Canada – Calls for a Ruthenian Bishop – Apostolic Visitations to North America – Nykyta Budka’s Early Life – The Selection Process – Nomination – Journey to Canada

Chapter 2. “The Need to Organize”                                                          
Incorporation and Statutes – First Pastoral Letters – Relations with Roman Catholic Clergy –  Decree Fidelibus Ruthenis – Ukrainian Clergy and their Churches – Education and Sisters – Finance and Administration – Proselytism

Chapter 3. The First World War
Pre-War Memoranda – The Summer of 1914 – Two Pastoral Letters – Under Suspicion – Clergy Investigated and Arrested  – Forbidden to Leave Canada – Ukrainians Interned – Arrest in Hafford – Exoneration and Naturalization –Ukrainian Independence – The Canadian Ukrainian Orthodox Movement

Chapter 4. The Post-War Years 
New Recruits – Challenges with Secular Clergy and Religious Orders –  Deteriorating Health – Surgery and Convalescence  – Request for an Auxiliary Bishop

Chapter 5. Bishop Budka’s Resignation  
Calls for Budka’s Resignation – 1927 Annus HorribilisAd Limina Visit to Rome – Leave of Absence – Papal decision – Resignation – Final Pastoral Letter

Chapter 6. From Rome to Lviv  
Obstacles to Becoming Auxiliary Bishop – Choosing a new Bishop for Canada – Financial Conundrum – Canadian Citizen to the End

Chapter 7. Nykyta Budka Returns to Western Ukraine 
Ministry in the Lviv Archeparchy – Lay Organizations – Rebuilding Zarvanytsia Shrine – Response to Holodomor

Chapter 8. Martyrdom for the Faith                                                      
Two Soviet Occupations – The Arrest of the Hierarchy – Trial – World Reaction – Imprisonment and Death – Earthly Rehabilitation and Glorification – In Search of a Martyr’s Grave

Chapter 9. Conclusion                                                                            
Failings – Successes – Evaluation – Not the Last Word

Timeline – Bibliography – Index of Proper Names and Places

Thursday 1 August 2013

Budka Biography: Update

St. Augustine's Seminary, Toronto 1913

The Bishop Budka biography was publicly announced by Bishop David Motiuk on 12 June 2012. This anticipated announcement was made even though the work was not completed, in order to coincide with the official celebration of the Budka centenary which, in turn, was made to coincide with Patriarch Sviatoslav's pastoral visit to Canada. Since then, the centenaries of Budka's nomination (15 July), ordination (14 October), arrival in Canada (6 December), and enthronement (22 December) have come and gone. Nevertheless Budka celebrations are continuing throughout 2013, to commemorate the first steps of his Canadian mission. Some of those events can be found on the Budka website. Below is is a brief summary of the stages involved in producing this thoroughly researched biography:

- July 2008: the Edmonton Eparchy commissioned a research paper/small booklet on the history of Nykyta Budka's nomination to Canada.
- 2009: The Ukrainian Catholic Bishops of Canada asked for the project to be expanded into a full biography.
- A team of historians from the Ukrainian Catholic University in Lviv (UKU) was brought on board the project to provide materials from Budka's early and later life, before and after his mission in Canada.

- 2009–2011: the author performed intense research in seven Vatican and Canadian archives.
- 2011–2012: a draft of a full biography was composed in eight chapters. Materials from UKU were translated and thoroughly reworked.
- April —July 2012: first draft of the book was corrected and edited by six linguists, scholars. historians, church advisors and editors.

- July 2012: The Metropolitan Sheptytsky Institute was asked to co-publish the work. As part of their procedure, they submitted the draft to three scholars specialized in Ukrainian Canadian history.
- August 2012: UKU historians provided clarifications of their contribution and further material.
- September—October 2012: The three Canadian scholars submitted their comments on the first draft to Sheptytsky Institute, which approved the publication.
- November—December 2012. The first draft was thoroughly edited according to the scholars' submissions.

- A second draft of the biography was completed in December 2012.
- A title was chosen for the book, God's Martyr, History's Witness: Blessed Nykyta Budka, the First Ukrainian Greek-Catholic Bishop of Canada.
- A foreword was contributed by Dr. Stella Hryniuk, the first scholar to treat Budka from an historical perspective in the 1980s.

- January 2013: copy-editing and layout of the manuscript commenced. Photographs were collected and their location in the text determined.
- February 2013: a draft layout of the first section of chapter was prepared.
- Due to serious illness, copy-editing and layout temporarily stopped.
- April 2013: copy-editing and layout resumed. a draft layout of the first chapter was completed.
- April–July 2013: The layouts of the entire book are completed.  Copy editing began.
- December 2013: First copy-edit and index are completed.
- May–June 2014: Final copy edit completed
- Sent to the printer 4 July 2014.

Monday 1 July 2013

Patriotic Pastoral on Dominion Day

Bishop Budka's letter commemorating the 50th Anniversary of Canadian Confederation - 1917

Despite accusations to the contrary by his opponents, the Government of Canada always considered Bishop Nykyta Budka to be a key collaborator, especially since he encouraged his fellow Ukrainian immigrants to become faithful and productive Canadians. Below is an English translation of a pastoral letter, written to his flock on 26 June 1917, to commemorate the 50th jubilee of Confederation:

On the first of July of this year, all Canada will celebrate the 50th Jubilee of Confederation. On this occasion I write these few words to You, My Dear Faithful.

The first two hundred years of the known history of Canada were filled with conflicts over the possession of this new land, and they ended with the Treaty of Paris in the year 1763, when France renounced all rights to Canada and Canada became a British colony. The struggle over the the form of government and the efforts for the progress of Canada filled the next hundred years of history under the rule of Great Britain.  In the year 1840 the so-called Lower and Upper Canada (Ontario and Quebec) united in one entity by an Act of Union by the British Government and thenceforth parliaments and a governor have governed a united Canada. But certain statesmen, who are known as the Fathers of Confederation,  in each of the individual provinces of British North America, wanted to see all the provinces united in one entity.  When this idea became generally accepted, the sought-after British North America Act was issued by Queen Victoria, and it came into force on 1 July 1867.  [...]

Thus, the first day of July is called Dominion Day in Canada, as the British North America Act established the the constitution of Canada which is in force to this day.  On 1 July of this year 50 years will have passed since this important event, and this day will be thus solemnly commemorated everywhere in Canada. The British North America Act is the foundation of Canadian freedom, which has attracted millions of immigrant settlers here, among whom are we freedom-seeking Ukrainians.  In taking advantage of Canadian freedom, we also have the duty to  know her history and to rejoice in those advantages which developed from the wise and progressive foundations which were laid by Queen Victoria and the Fathers of Confederation.

This July 1 is the day when Canada will commemorate its fiftieth year of life as an independent country and as a free part of the British Empire. When we look back at those 50 years in the life of Canada, we see that her rapid  progress, in such a short time, is not found anywhere else in the history of nations. Railways, schools, cities, roads, commerce, manufacturing etc., indeed the whole appearance and life of Canada has so advanced in these 50 years that we can only attribute this progress to the particular blessing of God, to Whom we must render thanks on this 1 July.  In embracing this historical jubilee day, every citizen and resident of Canada can only thank God for a 50 year-achievement which shines in our eyes so brightly and in which light we live today. We thank the Giver of all good for all the things with which He has blessed the wonderful country in which we have the honor and good fortune to live.

And when we remember that, today, in the name and for the sake of our Dominion, thousands of her citizens have borne their breasts to fire and bayonet, we stand in solidarity with them Everyone must see that it is in the interest of all Canadian citizens that the sacrifice of her citizens will bring Canada the greatest glory and advantage.  Thus, on this jubilee day, we lay before the altar of the Almighty and Just God our ardent prayers, that He would deign to shorten the days of war to the glory and honour of all Canadians. On this day, let us forget where we came from and let us be only by citizens of our Dominion and rejoice in her first fiftieth jubilee.  May this be a day of rejoicing for all citizens of Canada, with a joy which unites one to another and all of us to the Dominion. May this be a true Dominion Day!

The Federal Government and all the provinces individually want this celebration to be marked especially in churches with thanksgiving for the past and with petitions for the prosperous future of Canada. Citizens should make every effort so that this jubilee Dominion Day will be long remembered. I desire that all of my Dear Faithful, especially children, worthily and actively celebrate this holiday.  And it is with this in mind that I am writing this letter explaining it to them.  Accordingly, I decree that:

On this day, let everyone celebrate together. Let the children go to the children’s hall of the school where they went during the last school year. Let everyone take part in the speeches, celebrations, parades, and processions which are scheduled in their areas on 1 and 2 July. And in the churches let us pray to God for Canada our home; for her and our happy future. On the Sunday the 1st of  July, the Revrerend Pastors shall also add to the ordinary second intention and Ektene [litany] of Peace the intention of thanksgiving for the past blessings of Canada and a petition for her happy future, and the ektene for general intention of the citizens of Canada. After the [liturgical] celebration, let the children sing: God save the King.  A short lesson on the meaning of this jubilee Dominion Day is to be given at the Church services or preferably during the public celebrations, so that everyone would understand the reason for rejoicing and be edified.

May the Loving Lord bless You all with a happy future.      +Nykyta

Friday 5 April 2013

Traveller's Guide: Bishop Budka's First Pastoral Letter

A new electronic library project has posted an online scan of Blessed Nykyta Budka's first pastoral letter Traveler's Guide for Ruthenians who are going to Canada (Дороговказ для Русинів, що ідуть до Канади). This document was published a hundred years ago on 5 April 1913 and was followed by a second pastoral letter on 20 April entitled On the Need to Organize (О потребі організації).  
The second letter is written in the form of a traditional pastoral letter and so it is often mistakenly referred to as Budka's first pastoral.  However, the Travellers Guide is clearly labelled "Pastoral Letter." on its cover and frontispiece. The reason for the confusion is that, unlike On the Need to Organize, Traveler's Guide is not written in the traditional form. Although it does fulfull the criteria of being a message on faith and morals, Bishop Budka chose to compose his first address to his flock in the style of a handbook for Ukrainian Greek-Catholic immigrants to Canada. This informal style was the tone with which he had been familiar while serving as consultant for Ukrainian emigration to the Archeparchy of Lviv and Metropolitan Andrey Sheptytsky. 
Written in their own language and in a paternal but informal voice, this pamphlet cautioned against the tempting offers and free gifts of religious proselytizers and work-agents seeking to take advantage of the newcomer’s ignorance.  Bishop Nykyta advised his flock not to change their itineraries, and concluded by encouraging them not to neglect their spiritual welfare religious assistance: “Once you have settled in, find out where there is a Ruthenian priest.  Invite him to visit your settlement and to help you to organize a parish.” It is significant that, before setting out a formal pastoral program, Budka went to the heart of his people’s religious problems: the fact that they were being proselytized from the very moment they set foot in their new land.  
English translations of pastoral messages may be found in Pioneer Bishop: The Story of Bishop Nicetas Budka’s fifteen years in Canada. Published in 1990 by Knights of Columbus Council 5914, Regina, Saskatchewan.

Evolutio: A snippet of Budka's second pastoral letter, On The Need to Organize, was posted under the heading "For Your Good and Your Gain".

Saturday 16 February 2013

The Resignation of Patriarchs and Popes

Only a few days ago, it seemed impossible that a Pope would resign.  Then, in the words of  the dean of the College of Cardinals, the world was struck by a “lightening bolt in clear skies” when Benedict XVI announced his abdication as Bishop of Rome and Head of the Universal Church. Since February 11 we have all been reflecting on the significance of the papal decision.  And no doubt Eastern Catholics will be reflecting on it from their own unique perspective, as Orthodox Christians in full ecclesial communion with the Roman Pontiff.

Pope Benedict’s gesture is only possible, and perhaps only warranted, in the our day and age. No Pope has stepped down for six-hundred years and, until the late twentieth century, bishops only resigned in extraordinary circumstances. When a bishop was no longer fit to govern his diocese, a coadjutor was appointed to govern while the bishop officially retained his headship.

Then came the Second Vatican Council (1962–1965) and the sweeping reforms that followed.  Of these reforms was the introduction of mandatory retirement for all pastors of souls and for church officials. Bishops and priests were required to submit their resignations upon reaching the age of seventy five.  In 1970 Pope Paul VI extended this law to cardinals who, nonetheless, were permitted to continue to take part in the College of Cardinals until the age of eighty years, at which time they automatically ceased to be decision-making members of the Roman Curia.  Yet the head of the Universal Church, the Pope, was not subjected to this legislation (indeed the Roman Pontiff is the lawgiver).

Mandatory retirement caused controversy within church circles. Some protested, some complained, some grumbled under their breath, while others accepted retirement willingly and even gladly.  Over the years, once bishops had submitted their resignations, the Pope sometimes chose to extend their governance beyond the retirement age, until a suitable replacement could be found.  At the end of the twentieth century, Pope John Paul II mitigated his predecessor’s law somewhat, allowing cardinals the over-eighty to take part in initial conclave discussions, up to but not including the closed voting in the Sistine Chapel.

In the Eastern Catholic Churches the introduction of mandatory retirement for bishops caused not a little controversy. Some argued that such a reform did not suit the traditions nor theological sensibilities of the East. An key issue concerned the Fathers and Heads of Eastern Catholic Churches, such as patriarchs and major-archbishops.  Many argued that, like the Pope, heads of their Particular Churches (sui iuris), should not be subject to mandatory retirement. 

In the Ukrainian Greek-Catholic Church Cardinal Yosyf Slipyj strongly opposed such reforms and would not retire at eighty.  Two other Ukrainian bishops followed his example: Neil Savaryn of Edmonton and Isydor Boretsky of Toronto.  In the case of the two Ukrainian Canadian bishops, the Apostolic See appointed administrators to effectively replace them.  In Slipyj’s case, however, Pope John Paul II convoked the Synod of Ukrainian Bishops to elect a coadjutor and future successor, while Slipyj continued to head the Church until his death in 1984.

Part of the retirement issue was resolved in 1990 when John Paul II promulgated the Code of Canons of the Eastern Catholic Churches.  While requiring all Eastern Catholic priests and bishops to submit their resignations, the Eastern Code did not make a similar stipulation regarding patriarchs and major-archbishops. Neither does it stipulate what measures should be taken when the Head of the Particular Church reaches the point where he is unable to effectively govern. 

Both Slipyj and his successor Myroslav-Ivan Lubachivsky became very frail at the end of their mandates. While their spiritual headship was preserved, the important question arose as to who was to govern in their stead.  To resolve such questions the Apostolic See appointed administrators. The Synod of Ukrainian Bishops selected Bishop Lubomyr Husar as locum tenens and, upon Lubachivsky’s death in in 2001, it chose Husar as Major-Archbishop. Within hours of confirming the election, Pope John Paul conferred the cardinatial dignity upon Husar, making him a member of the de facto Senate of the Universal Church.

Over the centuries, not a single one of the Ukrainian cardinals (Isydor of Kyiv +1463, Mykhaylo Levytsky +1858, Sylvestr Sembratovych +1898) attended a conclave. In 1978 Slipyj was excluded due to age and, thus, in 2005 Lubomyr Husar became the first Ukrainian cardinal to cast his vote in a papal election. However, by that time, he had already lost his eyesight and had to recite the oaths from memory, which eventually led Husar to ponder if he could continue to effectively lead the Ukrainian Church. 

Although not required to resign, Patriarch Lubomyr could certainly do so voluntarily. In 2011 confered with Pope Benedict before making his decision to step down. And since then two other Eastern Patriarchs have followed Husar’s example and retired due to age and infirmity.  Perhaps Benedict XVI considered these resignations in making his own decision to abdicate.

In 2011, the Synod of Ukrainian Hierarchs selected a very young and energetic successor to Husar, Sviatoslav Shevchuk. Immediately after his election, Major-Archbishop (Patriarch) Sviatoslav traveled to Rome to manifest ecclesial communion with the Roman Pontiff.  It was very telling to witness the Universal Pontiff addressing this young man as “Your Beatitude”, and to hear the new Head of our Church call the Bishop of Rome “Most Holy Father.”

Once again, in 2013 no Ukrainian cardinal will be able to take part in the impending conclave. Cardinal Husar turns eighty only a few days before, and the retired Latin Archbishop of Lviv, Cardinal Marian Jaworski, exceeded the age-limit in 2006.

While all Catholics feel a great loss at the abdication of their Universal Father, Ukrainian Catholics still look forward to the day when, God willing, Pope Benedict’s successor will call upon Patriarch Sviatoslav to join the universal Senate, becoming perhaps the youngest member of the College of Cardinals.

Evolutio:  Despite the absence of Ukrainians within the electoral college, the new Pope's white cassock might be sewn by two women from Lviv who, for in recent years, have been working for the papal taylor Annibale Gammarelli.