Bishop Nil Lushchak already calls the Mukachevo Greek Catholic Eparchy a "Church"
According to him, Rome recognizes the status of the Church of its right for the Eparchy and only the highest church authorities can change it.
The hierarch wrote about this in his address without a date and without a signature, published on the diocesan website.
"Recently, there have been more and more discussions on the canonical status of the Greek Catholic Eparchy of Mukachevo in social networks on the internet. In this regard, I would like to state the following: the Apostolic See, headed by the Roman Bishop, recognizes the status of the Eparchy of Mukachevo as a church of its right. This fact, especially in this Jubilee year, should encourage all of us to pray more intensively in gratitude for all the gifts, both spiritual and other, that we have received thanks to our Church, and which, I am sure, serve for the benefit of God's people and Ukraine," the document says.
There is no mention of the documents of the Apostolic capital regarding such recognition in this appeal. At the same time, this document states:
"We, as Catholics, fully and in everything adhere to the instructions and positions of the Apostolic capital, including on the issue of the status of our church. Based on the fact that from the point of view of dignity, All Churches of their right are equal among themselves and have complete freedom with respect for the general and own right to form and develop the internal life of their church, except for the highest authority of the church, there is not a single competent forum or instance that would be able to change the canonical status of a particular Eastern Catholic Church of its right," Bishop Neil said.
In February 2021, the faithful of the Greek Catholic Eparchy of Mukachevo sent a letter to Pope Francis, in which they expressed concern about the crisis state of affairs in the Eparchy "when the body of the Greek Catholic Church in Ukraine still remains divided" and asked the Roman Bishop to appoint them a Ukrainian Bishop.
Transcarpathians also called the special status of the Eparchy an anachronism, according to which it is administratively subordinate not to the Supreme Archbishop of the UGCC, but directly to the Apostolic capital.
As RISU has already reported, the document signed by the Apostolic Nuncio to Ukraine Antonio Franco of February 7, 1993, shows that the Apostolic See, solving the problem of internal confrontation in the GCEM in the early 1990s, did not reach any final solution and did not grant a special status-sui juris — to the Mukachevo Greek Catholic Eparchy.
Official publications of the Apostolic See claim that the Greek Catholic Eparchy of Mukachevo does not have the status of sui juris even today. According to the Annuario Pontificio 2020 (P. 485), it, as it was before, remains "immediate sogetta alla Santa Sede", that is, directly subordinate to the Holy See. The same information is provided by the website www.catholic-hierarchy.org.
The list of churches that actually have the status of sui juris, placed in the Annuario Pontificio (pp. 7-10 and 1749), also does not include the Eparchy of Mukachevo. In general, there are no churches below the metropolitan level in the list of Churches of their own right, and the Eparchy of Mukachevo is not a Metropolitan Church, but an Eparchy.
It should be noted that foreign persons and representatives of the UOC-MP are actively involved in the discussion around the Eparchy of Mukachevo.
We are talking, in particular, about the scandalous separatist priest of the UOC-MP Dmitry Sidor, who (as we can see in the video) gets out of his skin, proving that the Eparchy of Mukachevo should not unite with the UGCC, and about the head of the Greek Catholic Church in Hungary, Metropolitan Fulep Kocis.
The latter, on February 27, 2021, at a personal audience with Pope Francis, even complained about the "significant Ukrainian influence" in the Greek Catholic Eparchy of Mukachevo and, accordingly, conveyed to the Holy Father the idea of preventing the unity of Greek Catholics of Transcarpathia with co-religionists in Ukraine.
As noted by Transcarpathian Greek Catholics, Fulep Kocis allowed a direct deception of Pope Francis, saying during the conversation that "the Eparchy has always been directly subordinate to the Pope."
At the same time, it is known that for Hungary, the issue of the Greek Catholic Eparchy of Mukachevo has always been primarily political, and every time Transcarpathia was part of this state, the latter sought from the Vatican to eliminate the autonomy of the Greek Catholic Eparchy of Mukachevo and subordinate it to the Hungarian archbishops in Esztergom. Conversely, it demanded the return of some special status to the Greek Catholic Eparchy of Mukachevo as soon as it lost Ukrainian lands.