During Ecumenical prayer in Prague Patriarch of UGCC remembered the Holodomor, liquidation of UGCC, and deportation of Crimean Tatars
Head of the UGCC Sviatoslav (Shevchuk) took part in the ecumenical prayer for the tortured and murdered political prisoners. The services were held in St. Vitus Cathedral in Prague.
It has been reported by the Information Department of the UGCC.
Ecumenical prayer was led by Cardinal Dominik Duka, Archbishop of Prague, in concelebration with Monsignor Joel Rumlom and Bishop of the Czechoslovak Hussite Church Tomáš Butta.
In his speech, the patriarch noted that this prayer remembered over ten million Ukrainians that had been killed in the artificial famine in the days of Stalin in Ukraine in 1932-1933. This artificial famine is called the Ukrainian Holodomor. And the international community calls it the genocide of the Ukrainian people.
“I also would like to remember in prayer the 70th anniversary of the forced liquidation of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church in the former Soviet Union. On March 8 this year marks 70 years since the so-called pseudo Lviv Council. This was the beginning of the way of the Cross for Metropolitan Josyf Slipyy and seven bishops of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church,” the hierarch said.
The patriarch noted that at the moment of the liquidation of the UGCC in 1946, it included about three thousand priests, hundreds of monasteries, seminaries and three Theological Seminaries and one Theological Academy.
“Everything was destroyed and the Church moved underground. About 800 priests were forcibly affiliated to Moscow Orthodoxy, as well as all temples of the UGCC. Only in the 40s and only in Western Ukraine about one million people were deported to Siberia. This pseudo council was the beginning of the destruction of the UGCC in Czechoslovakia, Poland, Romania, Hungary and other countries that fell under Soviet enslavement,” said the UGCC Patriarch.
“In this prayer,” he added, “I would like to remember all Orthodox, Protestants, Roman Catholics, Jews and Muslims who were repressed by the communist totalitarian regime. But the entire ethnic group, the ethnic group, who profess Islam as their faith were deported from their land. This ethnic group is Crimean Tatars.”
“For all of them we now raise our prayer to the Virgin,” the UGCC patriarch said.