Cardinal Leonardo Sandri, the Prefect for the Congregation for the Oriental Churches, is in the United States this month, visiting some of the numerous Eparchies (Dioceses) and Eastern Catholic Communities spread throughout the country.
By Vatican News
The first stage of the Cardinal Sandri’s visit began in the city of Chicago, the seat of both a Ukrainian Catholic Eparchy and a Syro-Malabar Diocese. On Friday, the Prefect met with members of the Ukrainian Eparchy of St Nicholas of Chicago, including the Bishop, Venedykt Aleksiychuk. He also visited the Cathedral, as well as the parish of Sts Volodymyr and Olha.
On Sunday, Cardinal Sandri presided at the Holy Qurbana (the “Holy Sacrifice”), the Eucharistic liturgy of the Syriac tradition, as part of his visit to the Syro-Malabar community. The St Thomas Syro-Malabar Catholic Eparchy of Chicago covers the whole of the United States, and is one of three eparchies of the Syro-Malabar Church outside of India.
The following day, Monday, Cardinal Sandri visited Mundelein Seminary, about 50 km from downtown Chicago, and the University of St Mary of the Lake. Several Eastern Catholic Churches send students to Mundelein to study for ministry. In the afternoon, the Cardinal visited with Syro-Malabar priests and religious who are in the midst of a spiritual retreat.
After his time in Chicago, Cardinal Sandri will travel to Detroit, where he will meet with Bishops of the Chaldean Catholic Church in the United States and Canada. While in Detroit, the Prefect will also visit one of the Maronite parishes in the area.
The final leg of Cardinal Sandri’s visit includes the jubilee celebrations for the 50th anniversary of the creation of the Eparchy of Parma of the Ruthenians, and the Metropolia of Pittsburgh of the Ruthenians. Cardinal Sandri will also visit the Ukrainian Greek-Catholic Eparchy of Saint Josaphat, where he will be welcomed by the local Bishop, and by the new Metropolitan of Philadelphia of the Ukrainians, Archbishop Borys Gudziak.
During his time in Parma and Pittsburg, the Prefect will meet with all the Ruthenian Bishops of the United States, as well as having the opportunity to visit with young people, clergy, and religious of the community.