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The Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church seeks the right to conduct services in the Pochayiv Lavra, which is leased by the UOC of the Moscow Patriarchate.
Head of the UGCC Sviatoslav Shevchuk said it in an interview with Ukrainian Pravda.

"We are also talking about the Pochayiv Lavra. We don't want to make any property claims today. Nevertheless, we say that this is a historically significant spiritual center of our Church.

Researchers of Kyivan Christianity in the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth say there was once an unwritten agreement between Orthodox Christians in the Kyiv-Pechersk Lavra and Greek Catholics in the Pochayiv Lavra regarding the printing of liturgical books. What we published in Pochayiv was no longer published by the Orthodox in the Kyiv-Pechersk Lavra. Why? Because we exchanged those books.

The Pochayiv Lavra was a unique center of musical culture, spiritual, religious and international culture.

Obviously, when the Union was liquidated, the Russian tsars turned Pochayiv into a border outpost. And the Soviet authorities purposefully annexed the Pochayiv Lavra with its territory to the Ternopil region. It was done in order to destroy the Union in Halychyna.

Therefore, those who will decide who to give access to the opportunity to pray should take into account that the Pochayiv Lavra historically relates to our Church," he said.

The Primate of the UGCC stressed that so far, there have been no "specific steps" to change the status of the Pochayiv Lavra. He added that the UGCC does not question the state's ownership but wants to have access to this shrine.

Source. [risu.ua]

Personally, I hope the day comes very soon when this becomes a reality.

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Your very interesting post prompted me to do a little research into the Pochayiv Lavra. With regard to your following quote:

"Researchers of Kyivan Christianity in the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth say there was once an unwritten agreement between Orthodox Christians in the Kyiv-Pechersk Lavra and Greek Catholics in the Pochayiv Lavra regarding the printing of liturgical books. What we published in Pochayiv was no longer published by the Orthodox in the Kyiv-Pechersk Lavra. Why? Because we exchanged those books."

I quickly discovered the following:

Pochayiv Lavra had an indirect influence on Orthodoxy in the West. Archimandrite Vitaly (Maximenko), the director of the monastery’s printshop, evacuated the monastery’s printshop following the Russian Revolution. He then fled to Czechoslovakia, where he started a new brotherhood and resumed publishing. This new St. Job of Pochaev Brotherhood moved from Czechoslovakia to Germany and eventually America, where it joined the Holy Trinity Monastery near Jordanville, New York, with now-Archbishop Vitaly becoming its abbot. Holy Trinity Monastery thus carried on the publishing legacy of St. Job of Pochaev.[6]

And.....

In 1604, the monastic community was joined by Ivan Zalizo, a well-known champion of Eastern Orthodoxy in union with the then newly recognised Muscovite patriarchate Russian Orthodox Church and was a vocal critic of the Union of Brest. Formerly associated with the printing house of Prince Ostrogski, Zalizo established a press in Pochayiv in 1630, which supplied all of Galicia and Volhynia with Ruthenians Orthodox theological literature. The press continued to function until 1924, when it was taken first to Czechoslovakia, then to Munich, and then, in 1946, to the Holy Trinity Monastery in Jordanville, New York.

These entries are both from Wikopedia. The Jordanville connection is very interesting. How wonderful it would be to actually see this press. Thank you for a prompt to investigate an interesting facet of Ukrainian faith. I also hope that the Lavra is open to the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church for worship.

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Thank you for your post!

You might be interested in reading the following two articles as they are about the printing press run by the Basilians during their time at the Pochayiv Lavra:

1) Почаївський монаст...ом українського руху. [radiosvoboda.org]

2) Як купець Михайло Д...ьку спадщину Почаєва. [inlviv.in.ua]

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A report was posted on May 8, 2015 from Channel 24 of Ukraine about the Pochayiv Lavra: Почаївська лавра: уподібнення секті Кремля [24tv.ua]

As the video shows, there was a sign in the Church of the Dormition stating that Catholics, Protestants and the unbaptized had no place in the lavra and their donations and requests for prayer would not be accepted. The gift shop sold pro-Russian literature.

That sign and the anti-Ukrainian literature have since been removed according this posted January 18th article from Radio Svoboda: Українська чи прор...ри? Репортаж з Почаєва [radiosvoboda.org]

Based on what I have been reading in the Ukrainian press (with the help of Gooogle Translate), it looks likely that the lease the UOC-MP has with the lavra will be terminated. That could open the door for the UGCC to celebrate liturgies once again at Pochayiv..

A photo of Metropolitan Vasyl Semeniuk of the Archeparchy of Ternopil–Zboriv making a pilgrimage with fellow priests to the Pochayiv monastery was posted on social media [instagram.com]. May his next visit be to celebrate Divine Liturgy.

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Well, your posts about the Pochayiv Lavra were informative and an inspiration to find out more. The century of Basilian influence and the building of their Cathedral was fascinating to learn. Pochayiv is certainly a Ukrainian national treasure as well as a Christian spiritual treasure. It is is also important to world history, art and architecture. Equally important now, is its symbolic role in current events....... your posts are extremely timely.

The issue of its lease, and who should be allowed liturgical privileges in it, is certainly a complex one. The intricacies of its history testify to this.

From my somewhat cursory view, the Lavra should be shared by the Ukrainan Orthodox and Ukrainian Greek Catholics, both having access to visit, occupy,  learn and worship. It should also be accessable to all "well-meaning" Christians including Russians who accept it as a Ukrainian accomplishment.

It should not, however, be a frontier fortress for Russkiy Mir or any political movement. It is a world heritage site that belongs to God and civilized people. 

This business of the MP viewing the Lavra as exclusively theirs- because they are the "true church"- appears selfish and borderline cultish.

May the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church once again worship there.

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I've a passion for Church unity; any steps toward this end are to be applauded. It is a blessing from God.

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Originally Posted by Hutsul
Well, your posts about the Pochayiv Lavra were informative and an inspiration to find out more. The century of Basilian influence and the building of their Cathedral was fascinating to learn. Pochayiv is certainly a Ukrainian national treasure as well as a Christian spiritual treasure. It is is also important to world history, art and architecture. Equally important now, is its symbolic role in current events....... your posts are extremely timely.
I am happy to know you have enjoyed the articles I've posted.
Here's another one about the history of the lavra: Гора Почаївська: погляд крізь століття [photo-lviv.in.ua]

Quote
From my somewhat cursory view, the Lavra should be shared by the Ukrainan Orthodox and Ukrainian Greek Catholics, both having access to visit, occupy,  learn and worship. It should also be accessable to all "well-meaning" Christians including Russians who accept it as a Ukrainian accomplishment.
Considering the lavra's importance for Catholics and Orthodox, the only viable solution would be for both Churches to share the monastery, something similar to the "staus quo" at the Church of the Resurrection/Holy Sepulcher in Jerusalem.

Quote
It should not, however, be a frontier fortress for Russkiy Mir or any political movement. It is a world heritage site that belongs to God and civilized people. 
There was a Ukranianization movement in Pochayiv during the 1920's and 1930's: Article. [radiosvoboda.org]

Even a former abbot of the Pochayiv lavra introduced Ukrainian into the liturgical services, but was eventually thrown out: Article. [radiosvoboda.org]

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May the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church once again worship there.
Since 1991, the Basilians have tried unsuccessfully to have the Pochayiv lavra returned to them: Article. [risu.ua]

Now, in light of recent developmensts, there is hope that Ukrainian Catholics will be able to celebrate liturgies at Pochayiv once again.

Just a few days ago, His Beatitude received a painting of himself with the Pochaiv monastery in the background: Article. [ugcc.ua]
May it be a preview of what's to come.

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Certainly, when the Pochaiv Lavra is returned to the Ukrainian Orthodox Church (Orthodox Church in Ukkraine), it is a certainty that the UGCC will be able to serve Liturgies in a designated part of the monastic complex.

The Pochaiv Lavra belongs to both the Orthodox and Eastern Catholic traditions. It is popular among Latin and Armenian Catholics as well.

These are all spiritual children of the Most Holy Mother of God! Let them all come to their Mother!

Alex

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New development.

The Facebook page for the Basilian-Province of the Most Holy Savior in Ukraine has a post about a recent meerting between the protohegumen of the province and the chairman of the Ternopil Regional Council. A letter from His Beatitude, requesting that the Pochayiv Lavra be returned to the UGCC, was handed over to the chairmain: Facebook post. [facebook.com]

The Basilians have also posted on their FB page the icon of Saint Josaphat, which depicts him floating above the Pochayiv Lavra: Link. [facebook.com]

I'm glad to see that the UGCC and the Basiliasn are being proactive regarding this matter. The council had made a statement previously about transfering the lavra for use the OCU: Link. [te-rada.org]

How it will be resolved eventually is uncertain at the moment: Article. [suspilne.media]

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More recent articles about the Pochayiv Lavra:

Pochaiv Lavra: Is it possible to prematurely terminate the lease agreement of the UOC-MP?: Link (Ukrainian). [suspilne.media]

His Beatitude Sviatoslav speaks about the authorities' reaction to the UGCC's intention to pray in the Pochayiv Lavra: Link (English). [ugcc.ua]

"We cannot renounce our spiritual heritage," said Father Vitaly Kozak (UGCC) about the Pochaiv Lavra: Link (Ukrainian). [ugcc.ua]

OCU Metropolitan Nestor believes the Pochaiv Lavra should belong to the OCU, but is open to UGCC celebrating liturgies at the monastery: Link (Ukrainian). [suspilne.media]

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The Pochayiv Lavra, like the Kyivan Caves Lavra and St Sophia Cathedral are the three greatest Ukrainian spiritual shrines and whether one is Orthodox or Catholic - we were raised with tremendous pride in them as an integral part of our identity.

Our common prayer was that they would one day be rid of the communists and the Moscow patriarchate which faithfully collaborated with the Soviet state and still collaborates with the Russian state to a very intimate degree.

Our life-long prayers are finally being answered!

As for ecumenism . . . I think it has been really problematic over the last few decades following Vatican II.

I never understood what it really entailed and there were wide variations in interpretation and practice of it.

Orthodox and Protestants were always suspicious of ecumenical overtures from Rome seeing it as a kind of subtle outreach to them to bring them into the Catholic fold.

On the other hand, when Orthodox saw EC's become "Orthodox in everything but Rome" they tended to be happy because they seemed to feel that eventually the EC's will "see the light" and "return to Orthodoxy." Protestants too tend to see ecumenism as being dangerous because of the idea of leading to a worldwide church of watered down doctrine to make everyone satisfied. Catholic charismatics or members of the neo-pentecostal movement adopted many Pentecostal practices and also Evangelical Protestant ones which got them excited about seeing an influx of Catholics into their groups . . . In Catholic school, the ecumenical mindset in the seventies seemed to be that Protestants and Catholics agree on the essentials and the rest is simply part of each one's "denominational pecularities." We even had the RSVCE edition of the Bible. The Novus Ordo was sometimes explained as a kind of "early Christian Eucharistic Rite" that would be "culturally" familiar to Protestants etc.

One would think that a reunion of churches had already occurred . . . It brought with it an incomplete understanding of Catholicism and a false idea of "Christian essentials" as if other aspects of the Catholic faith were somehow "secondary" or not as important.

In Ukraine, the Moscow Patriarchate was and is the promoter of Russian imperialism. With the genocidal war unleashed by Russia to destroy Ukrainian everything, there is an antipathy towards the Russia and the Russians. Ecumenism in Ukraine is flowering but among Ukrainian Orthodox (in communion with the Ecumenical Patriarchate please) Ukrainian Greek and Roman Catholics, very good relations with Ukrainian Protestants, including the Eastern Rite Lutherans (yes there are such animals) and excellent relations with Ukrainian Jews and Muslims.

Last edited by Orthodox Catholic; 04/20/23 01:36 AM. Reason: removed sentences not pertinent to the topic
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Metropolitan Ilarion Ohienko's comprehensive book in Ukrainian on the Pochayiv Lavra was researched in the Pochayiv library by him when he was a layman and scholar of Ukrainian church history.

He described in detail the coronation of the Pochayiv icon with papal crowns, the festival that lasted several days and paid for by the great Greek Catholic sponsor of the Lavra Count Myron Pototsky.

He spent much of his fortune on refurbishing the Lavra, the iconostasis and he even petitioned to open the Cause for the canonization of St Job of Pochayiv by Rome!

Medals struck with the Pochayiv icon had that of st Job on the back and I own one of these antique medals. Rome was actually quite willing to recognize the canonization of St Job which was done by a Kyivan Metropolitan in 1654, Dionysius Balaban (my wife's ancesstor).

The count became a Basilian tertiary and was buried at the Lavra in a monastic robe. He is mentioned in the Orthodox akathist to the Pochayiv Mother of God or alluded to anyway.

When the Orthodox took over the Lavra in the 19th century, the monks there petitioned the Synod of Moscow to remove certain Baroque items that offended their Eastern sensibilities. By the Synod expressly forbade them and told them to leave everything alone. At that time, most of the Synod of the Russian Orthodox Church were ethnic Ukrainians . . .

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Originally Posted by Orthodox Catholic
Metropolitan Ilarion Ohienko's comprehensive book in Ukrainian on the Pochayiv Lavra was researched in the Pochayiv library by him when he was a layman and scholar of Ukrainian church history.

He described in detail the coronation of the Pochayiv icon with papal crowns, the festival that lasted several days and paid for by the great Greek Catholic sponsor of the Lavra Count Myron Pototsky.

He spent much of his fortune on refurbishing the Lavra, the iconostasis and he even petitioned to open the Cause for the canonization of St Job of Pochayiv by Rome!

Saint Demetrius of Thessaloniki Church (OCU) has a list of Metropolitan Ilarion Ohienko's works available online: Link. [hram.in.ua]

His book on the Pochayiv Lavra can be read online (Parts 1-3 are not missing.): Фортеця Православі...а - Митрополит Іларіон [hram.in.ua].
The coronation is covered in Part 4. [hram.in.ua]

In his work on Job of Pochayiv, Metropolitan Ilarian wrote about Count Pototsky petitioning for Job's canonization: Преподобний Іов під василіанами [hram.in.ua]

Quote
The count became a Basilian tertiary and was buried at the Lavra in a monastic robe. He is mentioned in the Orthodox akathist to the Pochayiv Mother of God or alluded to anyway.

Yes, he's mentioned in Ikos 9 of this Akathist [uocofsaintgeorge.org]:

Rejoice, O commander of Pochaiv, Who did
wondrously draw near to yourself the heart of the
powerful count.

Rejoice, O you who unspeakably drew him to
build a new monastery together with a temple to you,
in your name, on the mount of Pochaiv


There is no mention of him in this other version [cjoc.ca].

Both Akathists are not "Catholic friendly". I'm curious to know if there is a Ukrainian Catholic/ Basilian version.

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Dear Griego Amigo!

You have become quite an expert in all this! Very nice!

There is no EC version of an Akathist to the Pochaiv Icon (yet).

The Pochaiv icon, as you doubtless know, is venerated in the same style as the miraculous Icon of the Dormition of the Mother of God in the Kyiv Caves Lavra - it is hung over the Royal Doors by ropes and is lowered down for the veneration of the faithful.

The UGCC parish of the Holy Protection in Toronto has such an icon of Pochaiv above its Royal Doors as does the Ukrainian Orthodox Cathedral of Saint Volodymyr.

The standard Akathist is sung before it in the UGCC case.

Perhaps in future the "unfriendly" versions could be "friended . . ." In fact, Count Pototsky (yes Nicholas or Mykola not what I said) was a former Roman Catholic who became Greco-Catholic and who was very open to the Orthodox. For example, he was the one who not only promoted the canonization of an Orthodox saint, he actually donated much money to help establish the Manjava Skete which became quite the bastion of Orthodoxy and anti-uniate activity...

It is possible to become more ecumenical as relations between churches warm up shall we say. There is a new version of the Akathist to St Josaphat that has had the less than ecumenical thrusts at the Orthodox removed. And the Coptic Orthodox have removed their anathema pronounced against Pope St Leo . . . There are Orthodox churches who have likewise dropped the anathemas against the Oriental Orthodox saints Dioscorus of Alexandria and Severus of Antioch as well.

If I'm not mistaken, it was the Oriental Saint Severus of Antioch who composed the prayer "Only-Begotten Son and Word . . ." sung in the Byzantine Divine liturgy . . .

The argument over the Trisagion was unfortunate. The Byzantine Churches hold it to be addressed to the Holy Trinity so when they learned the Alexandrian Churches were adding "Who was crucified for us" to it they immediately pounced on it as heretical

But in fact the Oriental Trisagion, also as used in the Armenian Apostolic Church, is a prayer addressed to Christ Alone.

The older tradition was that when St Nicodemus was helping take down the Most Pure Body of Christ from the Cross, he saw Christ open His Eyes. Nicodemus was shocked and took this as another manifestation of Christ's Divinity and he immediately cried out "Holy God! Holy Mighty One! Holy Immortal One!"

The Armenian tradition adds other words to the Trisagion such as "Who was bon of the Blessed Virgin Mary" and "Who rose from the dead" etc.

There is the famous Ukrainian Catholic Marian shrine of Zarvanytsia and I know that Ukrainian Latin and Greco-Catholic priests attend there, as well as clergy and faithful of the OCU.

Entire Ukrainian Orthodox pilgrimages also go to Fatima as well.

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Perhaps this deserves another thread, but, in any case, on this same ecumenical note, it is noteworthy that on May 10 His Holiness Tawadros II, Coptic Patriarch of Alexandra, will address the faithful at Pope Francis' General Audience St. Peter's Sq. This is unprecedented. Then, on May 14 Pope Tawadros II will offer a Eucharistic Liturgy at the altar of St John Lateran - another first, only marred by the very unfortunate "mistaken" allowance of a group of Anglicans led by their bishop to perform recently their eucharistic service at the same altar for which the Vatican is "red faced" at this flagrant violation of church Canons!

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