We have to present the facts to you, we have to show that all Ukrainian Catholics were aware of the events taking place, for eventually history will judge us and we have to document our struggle. Those who are in a position of power remain silent. Why do they hide from us the current situation in our church?
The 5th Synods of the Ukrainian Catholic Church was welcomed by the laymen of our church as a great step forward. Hopes were voiced that the situation would change, that unity would prevail. The wide coverage that synod is received in the world press was only a mirror of the feelings of many people. However, some of the Bishops who took part in the Synods are backing away from the historical decisions of that Synod. We are in fact having again a repetition of the events which followed the 4th Synod. The Vatican has ordered the Ukrainian Bishops to forgo the decisions of the Synod, it has taken on a stance of militant anti-Ukrainianism as a concession for its dialogue with Moscow.
We would like to document this reversal by our Bishops:
(А) Some bishops who took part in Synods have not given order for the «Joint Pastoral Letter» of the Synod to be read in their churches.
(В) The Weekly Munich (Germany) newspaper «Christian Voice» whose unofficial editor-in-chief is Bishop Platon Kornylyak, a participant in the Synod did not even inform its readers of the Synod and its decisions. It referred to it as a «plenary meeting of Ukrainian Bishops.» This newspaper did not mention the speech of Major Archbishop Josef Slipy during the Vatican Synod, a speech which was widely commented on by the world press.
(С) John Cardinal Krol, a member of the Vatican’s Congregation for Eastern Church, in a T.V. interview on November 15, 1971 made several insulting insinuations about His Beatitude Patriarch Joseph and stated about the 5th Synod of the Ukrainian Catholic Church: «But it was in no sense a canonical synod because he does not have the authority to call one. The bishops who attended were not under any impression that this was a canonical synod.» There are in Philadelphia, Metropolitan Senyshyn and two Auxiliary bishops of the Ukrainian Catholic Church. They said nothing about this insulting TV appearance and demanded no public apology from Cardinal Krol.
(D) Die Weltwoche a Swiss newspaper in an article on November 24,1971 which widely commented on the situation in the Ukrainian Catholic Church brought out the views of a member of the leadership of the Basilian Fathers who stated that only the Vatican and the Vatican’s Secretariat of State can rule the Ukrainian Catholic Church. Thus the Basilians have again shown their true face, purposely forgetting the historical rights of our church, rights guaranteed by Pope Clement VIII in 1595. The Basilian «logic» furthers itself by claiming that the 5th Synod legalized the illegal consecrations of Fathers Stock and Losten, and yet they previously claimed that only the Vatican Secretariat of State can rule the Ukrainian Catholic Church. What is actually happening is that the Basilians in their rush for Vatican favor will toe any line to further themselves. The question to ask of them, and of all opportunists is: Are canonical decrees comparable to the Soviet constitution? Are they also meant to be for export, for the outer world to see, but constantly violated in practice?
Furthering their assimilatory policies in spite of the 5th Synods the Vatican has again nominated two churchmen for the top posts in our hierarchy. As with the illegal nominations of Frs. Stock and Losten, the Vatican, after being reasured by the Basilian Order that all will be well, has ignored our Major Archbishop by not consulting him, and nominated Rev. Father Dr. Myroslav Marusyn for the post of Apostolic Delegate to Ukrainians in Western Europe replacing Bishop Ivan Buchko, and Fr. Efrem Kryvyj as Auxiliary Bishop to Bishop Josef Martynets in Brazil. At the same time the Ukrainian eparchy in Brazil is being made a direct subordinate of the Latin Church, it is being forcibly torn away from the jurisdiction of the Ukrainian Catholic Church. This manoeuvre is not new to the Vatican. In 1969 the Vatican forced the formaton of a separate Metropolitan for «Transcarpathian Rusyny», breading them away from their base, the Ukrainian Catholic Church.
But the more nomination of Frs. Kryvyj and Marusyn was not enough for the Vatican, they decided to add insult to injury and «consecrated» Fr. Kryvyj in the Latin rite. The ceremony was performed by Pope Paul VI. At this tragic «consecration» there were present the following Ukrainian churchmen, partipants of the Synods and permanent members of the Synod’s ruling body: Metropolitan Maksym Hermaniuk, Bishop Ivan Buchko, Bishop Augustin Hornyak, Bishop Joseph Shmondiuk and members of orders of monks. Patriarch Josef, while invited did not attend, feeling that this consecration is a direct violationjDf the historical rights of our church. But our four Bishops and the monks who attended this «consecration» did not stop at this, afterward they went to a party in honor of the newly consecrated Bishop where there was present a delegation from Moscow Patriarch Pimen lead by Bishop Filaret. It would be interesting to ask those Bishops who ate with Filaret if they mentioned the persecution of the Ukrainian Catholic Church in Ukraine, if they protested the liquidation of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church?
Pope Paul condemned the governments of the USA and South Vietnam for the bombing of NORTH VIETNAM. He defended the Jews arrested in Iraq and Leningrad. This is commendable, and a church leader should do so. But Pope Paul’s interventions seem to be one-sided. He has not condemned the violations of human rights by all governments. He has not condemned the «deathmills,» «psychiatric clinics» and against the degradation of man, for which Christ dies. All of this takes place in the USSR today. He has not defended the nationalities of the USSR and not a4word has Pope Paul said in defense of the «silent church» in Ukraine. On the contrary the prayer Pius XII introduced for the «silent church» was abolished in 1967 by Paul VI.
It is not pleasant for us to bring these facts to your attention, but we feel it is better to know the bitter truth than to live in the midst of lies. We all have to remember and work for one goal: the future of the Ukrainian Catholic Church. Its future lies in our hands.
Again we must underline the fact that the activities of the Society for a Patriarchal System in the Ukrainian Catholic Church, and of the entire Lay movement are not meant to destroy or injure the church. They are positive, they want to construct a stronger Ukrainian Catholic Church, to further the authority of certain bishops, and raise the autonomous life of our church communities. We are aware of the fact that our activities are not to the likings of the Vatican and its dialogue with Moscow.
Therefore we urge all laymen to hold public meetings, to discuss the situation in our church, to visit priests and bishops, to ask about the rights of our church. Are the decrees of Vatican II valid, and if so, why is the Vatican ignoring them?