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It has recently been reported that the Ukrainian President's brother, Petro (Peter) Yuschenko will become a monk and in the near future will enter a monastary of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church (Kyivan Patriarchate). It is thought that over time he will be named a bishop in the UOC-KP and will be instrumental in unifying the three main branches of Ukrainian Orthodoxy.

http://novynar.com.ua/politics/18171

There is precedent for Ukrainian political and church leaders to be related. Patriarch Mystyslav of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church (USA) was the nephew of Simon Petlura who was the president of the first Ukrainian Repulic of 1918 - 1920.

http://orthodoxwiki.org/Mstyslav_(Skrypnyk)_of_Kiev

Here is a 2005 picture of President Yuschenko (and wife) of Ukraine laying flower at the grave of former Ukrainian president Simon Petlura who is buried at Montparnasse cemetery in Paris, France.

http://images.google.com/imgres?imgurl=http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/4/4c/Yuschenko_in_Paris_2005.jpg/622px-Yuschenko_in_Paris_2005.jpg&imgrefurl=http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/Image:Yuschenko_in_Paris_2005.jpg&h=600&w=622&sz=114&hl=en&start=2&tbnid=nqb2rCY08VO-bM:&tbnh=131&tbnw=136&prev=/images%3Fq%3Dyuschenko%2B%26gbv%3D2%26svnum%3D10%26hl%3Den%26safe%3Dstrict%26client%3Ddell-usuk-rel%26channel%3Dus%26sa%3DG%26ad%3Dw5

I.F.

Last edited by Jean Francois; 01/21/08 04:44 AM.
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Very good! My one question would be how someone would think that a man will "over time...be named a bishop" when he hasn't even entered a monastery yet. That's pretty presumptuous, it sounds!

Alexis

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Oh my!! I'm laughing so hard, my sides hurt! I hand it to Jean Francois, you missed your calling in life. You should look into stand up comedy. You definitely are a natural! So much for sanctity and piety! Not needed if your brother's the prez! Not even a poslushnik yet and already to be named bishop! Too much! smile

Alexandr

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It has recently been reported that the Ukrainian President's brother, Petro (Peter) Yuschenko will become a monk and in the near future will enter a monastary of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church (Kyivan Patriarchate). It is thought that over time he will be named a bishop in the UOC-KP and will be instrumental in unifying the three main branches of Ukrainian Orthodoxy.


That sounds a bit odd to me. One might come or even jump to the conclusion that the man is only becoming a monk in order to be fast-tracked to become a bishop. On the other hand his intentions may be pure and he is only seeking his salvation not a bishop's crown.
I have not seen the Statute of the Kyiv Patriarchate online so I do not know how bishops are elected. In my church, the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of Canada, bishops are elected at the Sobor.

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Dear Alexandr,

S prazdnikami! In principle you are perfectly right. Alas, though, there is precedent for such in the wider Orthodox world - ample precedent - taking a man from layman to hierarch in the course of a week. How one can claim with a straight face to be a "monk" under such circumstances is beyond my simple mind. But that it is done I cannot deny, to my sorrow. This sort of nominalism is a scandal (come to think of it, nominalism in itself is usually a scandal).

Fr. Serge

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It's been reported that Petro holds "deep religious convictions" and that he's been the voice of the Church to his brother (in the business side, he owned a petrol company and is a lobbyist)...

Here's an article from 2006 regarding the Ukrainian Famine-Genocide Memorial:

Hearing on memorial's design reveals public's feelings about Famine-Genocide

by Zenon Zawada
Kyiv Press Bureau

KYIV - Vasyl Tokarev said he remembers his village in the steppes of the Donetsk Oblast in 1932 preparing for an expected food shortage the following year.

Extra supplies of apples and acorns were stored, and in 1933 Soviet government tractors arrived to provide needed seeds, which were all sown, said Mr. Tokarev, a Red Army veteran.

"It was not a Holodomor," Mr. Tokarev said. "We did not feel any government influence to provoke a famine. It was natural conditions."

Shevchenko laureate Pavlo Movchan was incensed by Mr. Tokarev's claims of the Soviet government's benevolence in 1933, and offered his own second-hand accounts which he remembered from childhood.

During the famine of 1946 and 1947, Mr. Movchan described how his neighbors had pointed out to him the women in the village who had eaten their children during the Holodomor.

"We were afraid of those women who ate their children in 1933," Mr. Movchan said. "Everyone was afraid of them like lepers."

In a German prison camp, a young man who survived the 1933 Famine by eating wild herbs he found in forests taught Mr. Movchan's brother how to distinguish which were edible, and which were poisonous, he said.

As Ukraine prepares to commemorate the 75th anniversary of the 1932-1933 Holodomor with the construction of a world-class memorial, the one thing that may be lacking is unanimity among Ukrainian citizens on the Famine-Genocide.

Whether out of their anomalous personal experiences, loyalty to the Communist ideology, allegiance to their Russian ethnicity or culture, ignorance of the facts, or simple denial, a sizeable minority of Ukrainian citizens isn't convinced the Holodomor was an artificial genocide hatched by Joseph Stalin to destroy the Ukrainian identity.

A September 6 public hearing in Kyiv to consider the architectural merits of the finalist models for the planned Holodomor complex in the Ukrainian capital instead became an emotional venting session replete with shouting, crying and raucous debate over whether an artificially induced famine had taken place.

A passionate group of elderly Red Army veterans who converged at the building of the National Union of Writers insisted there was no such thing, while others refuted them with facts, documents and second-hand accounts.

Petro Yushchenko, the Ukrainian president's brother, told the 30 or so members of the audience that he researched statistics regarding his home village, Khoruzhivka, in the Sumy Oblast.

He found that about 1,000 residents had either died or disappeared in 1932 and 1933, compared with 461 who died or never returned during the second world war.

"Our people killed their own people more than the fascists did," he said.

"Petro Andriyevych, like your brother, you absolutely don't know history," shouted Boryslav Yatsko, a Red Army veteran and activist who fights against revisionism of Soviet history within Ukraine and for preserving the Soviet memory.

"Famines occurred in every era, all over the world, and you're saying this was the only one," Mr. Yatsko continued.

"There were many famines, but this was a planned genocide," Mr. Yushchenko shouted in response.

"Then what was the Kuban?" Mr. Yatsko retorted, referring to the region in the Russian Federation where 1 million are estimated to have starved to death.

A Kuban famine survivor, 85-year-old Vitalii Koshechkin, stood up to tell the audience that it wasn't only Ukrainians who died from the spontaneous famines, and any memorial should honor all the people of the USSR. He and Mr. Tokarev were the only two witnesses to the 1932-1933 Famine to speak at the hearing.

Mr. Koshechkin cited documents that reveal that a top Ukrainian Communist official, Hryhorii Petrovskyi, traveled to Moscow in 1933 to plead with Joseph Stalin for relief - a request duly ignored.

He read a letter from the Organization of Red Army Veterans of Ukraine accusing President Viktor Yushchenko of exploiting the Holodomor to promote his own political agenda.

"You are abusing your position as president and trying to make from this human tragedy your own policy, which doesn't reflect the needs and necessities of the people," Mr. Koshechkin read.

"You forget that history is going to ask you a question: why, in peacetime, without famine, the population of Ukraine was reduced by 7 million people," he said, referring to Ukraine's population plunge since 1991.

The antagonism of Red Army veterans reveals that Ukraine's real problem lies in its citizens' lingering inability to confront its tragic past, Petro Yushchenko said.

Revealing his deep Orthodox Christian convictions, Mr. Yushchenko said the Holodomor occurred because "We blew up cupolas and crosses. Leading up to these events, we went down road of theomachy."

Instead of debating the details of memorials and museums, the nation must repent of its past before God, he said.

"To this day, we are playing with projects," Mr. Yushchenko said. "Again, it's our fault. Nobody in the whole world, no other country, no other nation would have allowed this. This is our ignorance, our absence of spirituality. It's even worse than ruining churches in the 1920s and 1930s," he stated.

A more pragmatic stance was expressed by American Morgan Williams, a long-time advocate for a Holodomor complex, who spoke on behalf of the worldwide Holodomor working committee that he chairs.

He urged Ukrainians to begin work immediately so that a Holodomor Memorial Historical Complex is ready by the 75th anniversary commemorations.

The memorial's artistic symbols have to be bold and dynamic enough to be internationally recognized, and its museum and research institution should become the world's foremost source of archives and study on the Holodomor.

"It should not just represent the victims of this tragedy," Mr. Williams told the audience. "It also should represent the crime that happened. It must be a strong symbol against a system that took the lives of millions of people."

Mr. Yatsko criticized Mr. Williams for flying to Ukraine to lecture Ukrainians on how to live. He accused Americans of plotting to distort random famines as genocides.

"Did you know the term for the Holodomor in 1933 came from America?" he shouted. "That's where it was created and spread throughout the world."

While no one pointed it out during the meeting, it is well-known among Holodomor researchers that the Donetsk Oblast escaped the genocide as among the least impacted regions.

It's estimated that the oblast suffered less than a 15 percent population decline during those two years, compared with 25 percent or more population drops in the neighboring Luhansk and Zaporizhia oblasts.

And no one informed Mr. Yatsko that the Kuban region of Russia had a particularly high ethnic Ukrainian population, which some suspect is a reason it was targeted.

In the middle of his impassioned words, Mr. Movchan, assistant chair of the jury reviewing proposals for the Holodomor complex, offered his assessment of Ukraine's position on the Holodomor, perhaps most aptly summing it up.

"The whole world will be laughing at us if presidents, government representatives from all over the world arrive to honor the Babyn Yar victims on September 25, and we, the nation of cannibals, are still discussing what kind of monument we need to have and whether it should it be there at all," Mr. Movchan said. "Then I believe we will only have foreign monuments and foreign tributes [to the Holodomor's victims].

The Ukrainian Weekly, September 17, 2006, No. 38, Vol. LXXIV

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Well, I've met with President Yuschenko and have discussed religious matters with him.

He and his family are deeply religious and he earnestly desires to create a unified and canonical Ukrainian Orthodox Church in Kyiv.

There are those who see the future of Ukrainian Orthodoxy only as a part of the Moscow Patriarchate.

But the days of that situation are really numbered.

As for "pushing" a man through monastic orders and through the ranks of the hierarchy - that happens all the time and it happens in the UGCC - since by tradition in the East a man must be in monastic orders.

On the other hand, Rome has been using this Eastern tradition to really "brow beat" the UGCC by appointing a plethora of Basilian and Redemptorist bishops for us.

And sometimes when the idea of having a Basilian bishop would foreseeably irk an eparchy, a Basilian candidate has been known to leave the Order to be consecrated as a secular priest . . .

In the West, the most famous case of rapid advancement is that of St Thomas Archbishop of Canterbury.

In Russia, where by tradition a man will not be ordained a parish priest unless he is married (at least this obtained before the war), there was a case of a New Martyr who wanted to be ordained a priest but had to wait until he was married. A woman with cancer who knew she had not long to live came forward and married him . . .

Despite the canonical issues and Moscow's pathetic arguments against Ukrainian Orthodox autocephaly, things are moving forward there and it won't be long before a canonical Orthodox Patriarchate in Kyiv will be a reality.

For this, we pray to the Lord!

Alex

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I agree with Alexander. I too believe in the santity and piety of a bishop (or Patriarch).

The election of Mystyslav as Metropolitan of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of Canada soon after WW2 was more of a 'coronation'. The fact that the Metropolitan was the nephew of Semon Petlura can't be discounted. At the time of his election, the vast majority of the members of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of Canada's were 'Petlurivtsi' (or decendants or Petlurivtsi).

What's with the Holodomor post ?

A United Ukrainian Orthodox Church will happen within 10 years.

I.F.


Last edited by Father Anthony; 01/21/08 06:19 PM. Reason: Defamatory and political content deleted. Poster is now warned! All discussion concerning politics is prohibited in this section.
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The election of Mystyslav as Metropolitan of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of Canada soon after WW2 was more of a 'coronation'. The fact that the Metropolitan was the nephew of Semon Petlura can't be discounted. At the time of his election, the vast majority of the members of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of Canada's were 'Petlurivtsi' (or decendants or Petlurivtsi).

I think there is a typing mistake here and the poster meant to type the "Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the USA" because Met. Mystyslav was metr,. for a very short time in Canada before he resigned and left for the USA. We in the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of Canada were pleased to elect Metr. Hilarion of Blessed memory, as our metropolitan after Metr. Mystyslav left.

Also the comments about Petlurivtsi apply to the Ukrainians in the USA not us here in Canada. I have relatives still alive who were at the sobor in Winipeg and the consecration of Metr. Mystylav and it did not have elements of a coronation.

Our church in Canada was founded by the first wave (1891 -1914) emigration of mostly Galicians as a Canadian church to have its own seperate administration. In the inter-war period, after the church was formed in 1918, the small emigration of settlers from Volynia and Bukovyna (craddle Orthodox) joined the UOCC. Finally in the third wave, there was an influx of people from Easterm Ukraine and some from Bukovyna and Volyna. Out hierarchy to the present day has always had its roots by heritage in Bukovyna and Volynia. The majority of the UOCC members are descendents from the first wave and early inter-war.

The situation of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church in the USA is very different from our history. Metr. Mystyslav when he was alive, was more politically involved in events, than our church hierarchy here in Canada. We do not see our metr. as a political leader but as a religious leader only. This is the way we in Canada like it. This is just another example of the differences between the two churches.


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On the other hand, Rome has been using this Eastern tradition to really "brow beat" the UGCC by appointing a plethora of Basilian and Redemptorist bishops for us.



Thanks for explaining this. This explains why all the recent bishops except for Bsihop Ken Novakowski in Canada have been Basilian Or Redemptorist. And Novakowski used to be with the Redemptorists.

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Dear Halia,

Sh-h-h-!

Let is be our secret - let's not let them know that we're on to them! smile smile

A gaping hole in the unstated argument by Rome that it is simply following Eastern Orthodox tradition in appointing Basilians and Redemptorists to our episcopate is that neither Basilians nor Redemptorists are traditional monastic orders in the way the East has always known them!

They are both (including the reformed Basilians) simply communities of priests organized around a particular mission - monastery life is not their characteristic.

However, if a Studite should become a bishop, like Patriarch Lubomyr himself, then, well . . . what happens is that such a bishop focuses properly on the liturgy, monastic spirituality and other related themes in his Eparchy. He truly serves to assist his people to live the charism of unadulterated Eastern Christian life as true Orthodox Catholic Christians in communion with Rome.

But we can't have that, can we? smile

Alex

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Dear Miller,

Yes, however . . . Metropolitan Ilarion Ohienko was more than just a religious leader of the UOCC, to be sure!

As an academic, his many publications taught generations of Ukrainian Orthodox (and people like myself) about Ukrainian language, culture, history as well as religious topics.

He was truly an ethno-national leader of his people in Canada and their defender. You will recall that in his writings he frequently uses the coined phrase, "Religious-national" and promoted it as something, he wrote, was specific to the genius of Orthodoxy (blending religious and national/cultural traditions, defending the people's identity etc.). And I agree with him!

As for Met. Mstyslav, he was a "Petlyurite" and was related to Petlyura. But there was a strong monarchist/Hetmanate movement among the Orthodox (and EC's) in the UOCC and they used to publish "Batkivschyna" with the logo "God, Hetman, Ukraine." I am in agreement with the Ukrainian monarchist movement and I share its assessment of Petlyura's role in Ukrainian history.

It was to that movement that the insertion into the UOCC Divine Liturgy for the Queen and the Royal Family can be attributed (my Orthodox students sometimes tell me they have a problem with that, but I tell them that the Queen is a descendant of St Volodymyr smile ).

Alex

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There have been exceptions - Metropolitan Andrey (a Basilian); and several Redemptorists - Blesseds Mykola Charnetsky and Vasyl Velychkovsky; and among the living, Mikhaylo Koltun, Stepan Menyuk, etc.

Mnoahaya lita to the monk Petro.

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Dear Father DIAKone!

Yes, not all of them were, well, less than Eastern! smile

And of all of them, I think the Redemptorists today have done the best job of being Eastern.

Alex

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Alex,

Do not discount the work of Evhen Konovaletz in Canada and the USA. After the assasination of Semon Peltura in Paris in 1926 Konovaletz (a military leader) became the leader of the OUN / UVO ("Zdobudymo Ukrajinsku Derzhavu, abo zhynymo u borotbi za neji" - Vienna, 1929). Konovaletz travelled to Canada and the USA twice in the early 1930's to organize the 'rag-tag' expatriate Ukrainian community Miller so well described in his post. In Canada they were organized under the Ukrainian National Federation (UNF) and by 1933 had branches in no less than 50 Canadian cities from Montreal to Vancouver.

It was the Orthodox element of the UNF leadership which invited the Metropolitan to settle in Canada after WW2. The Metropolitan was after all a refugee (DP) and was a unique ethno-national leader ideally suited for the post nationalistic minded WW2 Ukrainian Orthodox Church of Canada. To this day, very close ties remain between the UNF (of Canada) and the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of Canada. In fact, today there is UOCC priest who heads one of the largest and wealthiest branches.

Mnoahaya lita to the monk Petro.

I.F.


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