• Home page
  • News
  • Catholics
  • UGCC
  • Celebration of the 425th anniversary of the Union of Brest symbolizes that the Union Church has become a factor of global life in an international context - a historian...

Celebration of the 425th anniversary of the Union of Brest symbolizes that the Union Church has become a factor of global life in an international context - a historian

13 October, 09:56
Catholics
Celebration of the 425th anniversary of the Union of Brest symbolizes that the Union Church has become a factor of global life in an international context - a historian - фото 1
October marks the 425th anniversary of the restoration of communion with the Roman Apostolic See at the Ecclesiastical Council held in Brest.

Dr. Oleg Turiy, director of the Institute of church history and vice-rector for External Relations of the Ukrainian Catholic University in Lviv, told Vatican Radio about the significance of this historical moment.

"Celebration of the anniversary of the Brest Union in Modern Ukraine, first of all, symbolizes that the Church, which institutionally developed from this Union, today is a significant factor not only in religious but also in social, political, I would even say, global life in an international context. The church that was persecuted both in Tsarist Russia and the Soviet atheist government managed to survive in underground and is now largely a Church that sets certain trends in Ukrainian society, which places certain accents, which are guidelines for many people. Therefore, it seems to me that it is very important to see not only the historical fact of this Union, which opened up these horizons, which allowed the Kyiv Metropolia to enter a broader global context through its connection with the Roman Apostolic capital. While our enemies wanted to lock us up in some ghetto, limit our capabilities, the Brest Union was this step that opened up our horizons," Oleg Turiy said.

According to the historian, many of the questions that the bishops tried to answer when initiating the Brest Union today require modern answers.

"Today, it is important for the Greek Catholic Church to realize this mission – to represent universality in the Eastern Christian world, on the other hand – to be a lawyer, to be a representative, a spokesperson of this Eastern tradition within the Catholic Church. And I think that in this context, the celebration of the anniversary of the Union of Brest should attest to this important role of the Union Greek Catholic Church in the modern, both religious and in the wider world," Oleg Turiy said.

Regarding the events that will celebrate the 425th anniversary of the Brest Union, the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church and, in particular, the Ukrainian Catholic University, Oleg Turiy said:

"This year, the Synod of Bishops of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church emphasized the celebration of two events that are very different, on different extremities, but which are related to the theme of Church identity. It was the anniversary of the so-called pseudo-cathedral, where the Soviet authorities wanted to destroy the Church. It was in March and now in early October, it will be the 425th anniversary of the Brest Union. Both of these events were decided to celebrate in a certain combination, showing the continuity of the history of the Church, demonstrating how the Church that was born out of that Union, having undergone very serious trials and persecution, even official liquidation, today bases its identity both on this universal dimension and on unity with the Apostolic See, and on the testimony of this unity that Greek Catholics gave during the period of repression and persecution and which are the foundation on which this Church can build its modern life and develop relations with others."

Celebration of the 425th anniversary of the Union of Brest symbolizes that the Union Church has become a factor of global life in an international context - a historian - фото 80450

According to Oleg Turiy, the start of remembering the date of the Brest Union was given during a church-wide pilgrimage to Zarvanytsia, where His Beatitude Sviatoslav in his sermon emphasized the celebration of the anniversary of the Union precisely in the context of serving Church unity. At the request of His Beatitude Sviatoslav and the Synod of bishops, the Institute of church history of UCU is organizing a symposium in Kyiv to discuss the significance of the experience of the Brest Union and the church that is associated with it, for the search for modern models and ways of unification in the Christian world in general.

According to him, this is a topic that to some extent destroyed the dialogue between the Catholic Church and the Orthodox Churches, which was stalled due to the unwillingness to recognize the real existence of Union Churches.

Now, according to the historian, it is necessary that this topic in a calm, but reasoned, scientific environment again becomes the subject of serious discussion.