UCCA Asks Pope To Recognize Patriarchate

NEW YORK, N.Y. — The Executive Board of the Ukrainian Congress Committee of America asked Pope Paul VI to officially recognize the Ukrainian Catholic Patriarchate «and thus help bring an end to the anxieties now prevailing in the Ukrainian Catholic Church in the diaspora.»

The June 19th letter signed by Dr. Lev Dobriansky, President, Joseph Lesawyer, executive Vice-president, Ignatius Billinsky, Secretary, and Ivan Bazarko, Executive Director, retold the history of the Patriarchate movement and underlined that Archbishop-Major Josyf Cardinal Slipyj was elected Patriarch of the Ukrainian Catholic Church by the Synod of Bishops in Rome in 1969.

They said that the Holy See’s refusal to grant such a status to the Ukrainian Catholic Church is viewed by many as a Vatican policy which «deliberately sacrifices the Ukrainian Catholic Church in order to attain a political modus vivendi with Communist Russia.»

«A positive decision in this matter on the part of Your Holiness at this time, when the Ukrainian nation is suffering untold misery from Communist oppression and persecution for its faith, would be hailed by Ukrainians everywhere as an inspiring step which would strength the bonds of unity and loyalty which Ukrainian Catholics have always professed for the Apostolic See,» they wrote.

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