Rorate Caeli

Many Years to the New Head of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church!

(Originally posted on March 27, 2011 at 11:45 AM GMT)

UPDATE: The entire rite of enthronement can now be viewed on the official website of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church: LINK.

Scenes from the enthronement of the new head of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church, the 40-year-old Major Archbishop (or, as some would say, Patriarch) Sviatoslav (Shevchuk).


  1. The new Major Archbishop of Kyiv-Halyč is only 40 years old! He may become the youngest cardinal of the catholic church!

  2. Glorious!!!


  3. This is a wonderful theologian with a special emphasis on Paul Evdokimov. We can expect great things from his leadership. BTW: for our traditionalist friends who think the issue of marriage is an impediment to orders as a deacon, the Ukaranians call married men to priesthood as well. Of course, consecrated cleibacy is rightly honored above all and Bishops are called from the celibate clergy, who are all considered Monks

  4. some nice photos have been posted on from the occasion. Beautiful vestments, mitre and omoforion (pallium)

  5. Ad Multos Annos to Metropolitan Archbishop Sviatoslav Shevchuk!

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  7. Congratulation Archbishop Sviatoslav Shevchuk.

    May the Good Lord be with you in as the new head of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church.

    Keep faithful!

  8. I just wish that on such occassions they would leave out the commentaries during the prayers. Vatican TV is bad about this, too.

  9. That's old slavonic, their liturgical language, like an latin.

  10. Does anybody know who his ''electoral rivals'' were ? Is he more traditional than other bishops, or not ?

    I'm just trying to understand what the ''factions'' in the Ukrainian Greek-Catholic Church are.

  11. Многія літа!

    Could somebody say anything more about Major Archbishop's theological orienation?

  12. Actually--most of what was being sung was in Ukrainian and not in Church Slavonic.

  13. The language spoken during the prayers sounded like a distinctive Slavic version of Latin for if I wert not mistaken, I heard a few Latin verses been said with the obvious Koine Greek ?

    Lee Lovelock-Jemmott

  14. \\The language spoken during the prayers sounded like a distinctive Slavic version of Latin for if I wert not mistaken, I heard a few Latin verses been said with the obvious Koine Greek ?\\

    Modern Ukrainian is the official liturgical language of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church.

    While Slavic languages (including Ukrainian and Church Slavonic) as well as Latin are Indo-European languages, and therefore will have some things in common (in this case, no definite article), "Slavic version of Latin" is meaningless.

    (It just occurred to me that he might have said a line or two in Romanian, which is a Romance language with an admixture of Slavic words, especially liturgical Romanian.)

    There may have been a few lines in liturgical (not Koine) Greek, such as the Trisagion, "Eis polla eti, Despota" (For many years, O Master), and such, because these might get sung in Greek at a Hierarchical Liturgy, Latin normally would not be used at all, except maybe at Pascha for the Troparion and Gospel (which are chanted in many langauges).

  15. Thanks Jack. The comment about it been a Slavic version of Latin was never meant to denote an actual 'Slavic version' of Latin but that through his accent, it seems that he said a few words in Latin and if it were Romaninan, then that would most probably go some way as to why I could understand segments of his address even though I do not speak any Ukranian or any other Slavic tongue. Thank you for your insight and correction however.

    Lee Lovelock-Jemmott

  16. I opened the UGCC official website, and from there eventually opened another of which I lost the name. But this is an extract that might be of particular interest because three Orthodox hierarchs were present.

    The event was attended by over 2,000 people, including the former Ukrainian President Viktor Yushchenko and the leader of the political party Front of Changes Arsenii Yatseniuk with their spouses, the former head of the Ukrainian Security Service Valentyn Nalyvaichenko, the deputy head of the Presidential Administration Hanna Herman, the US ambassador John F. Tefft, the French ambassador Jacques Fort, the Israeli ambassador Zina Kalay-Kleitman and the Argentinian ambassador Lila Roldan Vazquez de Moine… There were also some 60 bishops from Ukraine and all over the world, including Apostolic Nuncio Archbishop Ivan Yurkovych, the delegate of the Prefect of the Congregation for Oriental Churches Cardinal Leonardo Sandi, the Lviv Metropolitan of the Latins Mechyslav Mokrytsky, Patriarch of Antioch and all the East, Alexandria and Jerusalem Gregory III, Archbishop of Presov for Catholics of Byzantine Rite his Eminence Archbishop Ivan Babiak, the delegate of the Po-lish Episcopal Conference Marian Rojek, the bishops of the Romanian Greek Catholic Church Virgil Berchea and Vasil Bizau, Apostolic Exarch for Catholics of Byzantine Rite in Serbia and Montenegro Yuri Dzhudzharu, Archimandrite and Apostolic Visitor for the Greek Catholics of Belarus Sergei Hayek... The representatives of the three orthodox churches also came: the bishop Yevstratii (the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the Kyiv Patriarchate) was later joined by the patriarchs Mefodii (the Ukrainian Autocephalous Church) and Volodymyr (the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the Moscow Patriarchate). The priests of the Moscow patriarchate attended this event, held by the Greek Catholics, for the first time. Previously, the priests showed examples of local ecumenism, which means that the priests of the both confessions jointly worked on several social projects. His Beatitude Sviatoslav supported this initiative: “I was glad to hug the three orthodox bishops on the first day of my service, openheartedly saying them: ‘Christ is among us!’ All of them replied: ‘Is and will be!’ It’s a good sign. I’m grateful for their openness. I hope that our relations will develop for the benefit of the Ukrainian people and our state.” Obviously, the Moscow patriarchate gathered a lot of intelligent and religious people who believe in God (keeping in mind His second commandment: let us love your neighbor…), and not in the “Russian world.” Evidence of this is the greeting to the new head of the UGCC by Metropolitan Volodymyr (Sabodan), provided to The Day by the UGCC press office.
    “I hope that during the time of your go-verning the UOC and the UGCC will develop good and constructive relations, the difficult period of our relationship will stay in the past and we will jointly fight the aggressive manifestations of secularism in our country,” it reads. According to His Beatitude Volodymyr, “our common goal is to educate the future generations of our compatriots on the basis of gospel values, as it will guarantee a harmonious development of Ukrainian society.” “I believe that by our joint efforts, accordingly to Kobzar ‘we’ll restore our peaceful paradise with the name of Christ.’”

  17. Liturgical Ukrainian is just enough like--and just different enough from--Slavonic to keep me in a state of stimulating uncertainty.

  18. "Some say?????"

    Yes. The Melkite Patriarch, for instance:

    Major Archbishop Sviatoslav Shevchuk has just declared that elevating his See to Patriarchal Status is the prerogative of the Holy See, so it would seem that even he accepts the legitimacy of the title "Major Archbishop":

  19. Besides the Ukrainian 5,000.000, there are further three Major Archdioceses: Malabar 4,000.000, Romanian 700.000, and Malankar 500.000.

    AND five Patriarchates: Maronite 3,000.000, Melchite 1,300.000 (the bishop with white beard and crosier, to the right of the Archbishop Svjatoslav, is the Melchite Patriarch), Chaldean 400.000, Armenian 400.000, Coptic 150.000, and Syriac 130.000.

    Apart from the “precedence of honor” of a Patriarch and the way that he is approved by the Pope, there is no real difference between the Patriarch and the Major Archbishop. The Patriarch, once elected by the Synod, and installed, asks the Pope for communion; while the Major Archbishop, once elected by the Synod, asks the Pope for an approval, and is installed subsequently. Both, however, run their Churches together with the respective Synods, independently.

    A few years ago it was reported that the Major Archbishop Ljubomir Husar went to the Pope to request a formal recognition of the Patriarchate, but both have eventually agreed that it would be better not to create problems with the Orthodox who would have objected. The Ukrainian Orthodox are already divided to three Patriarchates: Russian, Ukrainian Kiewan, and Ukrainian Autocephalous (mainly in diaspora). I think that the Patriarch who was present during the Liturgy was the latter.

    In practice, the Ukrainians refer to the cathedral in Kiew, still in the process of completion (everybody could see that there were no iconostas yet, but two large icons – Christ and Holy Mother – instead)…they refer to it as the Patriarchal Cathedral; and majority of priests, and the four bishops whose Liturgies I attended in London or Manchester, refer in the formal liturgical litanies, after the Pope to the “Patriarch” Ljubomir.


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