New Metropolitan-Archbishop of Рhiladelphia Borys Gudziak to be enthroned June 4
Tuesday, June 4, will be a truly historic day in the life of the Ukrainian Catholic Church in the United States as the Most Reverend Borys Gudziak, 58, a native of Syracuse, New York is enthroned as the seventh Metropolitan Archbishop of the Ukrainian Catholic Archeparchy (Archdiocese) of Philadelphia. The new spiritual leader of the Ukrainian Catholic Church in the United States succeeds Metropolitan-Archbishop Stefan Soroka, whose resignation for health reasons was accepted by Pope Francis on April 16, 2018. Since that time Bishop Andriy Rabiy has been serving as Apostolic Administrator of the Philadelphia Archeparchy.
After the Synod of Bishops of the Ukrainian Catholic Church met in Ukraine in September, 2018, the Synod made its recommendation to the Holy See for the appointment of the new Metropolitan-Archbishop of Philadelphia. Pope Francis announced the appointment of Bishop Gudziak on February 18, 2019.
The enthronement ceremony and hierarchical Divine Liturgy, when Metropolitan Borys officially takes canonical possession of the Archeparchy, will begin at 11:00 a.m. The liturgical procession will include 50 bishops from the Ukrainian Catholic, Eastern Catholic, Latin Catholic and Ukrainian Orthodox churches, 125 priests, 11 deacons and 70 members of the religious orders.
His Beatitude, Sviatoslav Shevchuk, Head and Spiritual Father of the Ukrainian Catholic Church and His Excellency Christophe Pierre, Apostolic Nuncio to the United States will preside at the Divine Liturgy.
The concelebrating clergy will include: His Grace Metropolitan Borys Gudziak, His Eminence Timothy Cardinal Dolan (New York); His Excellency Charles Chaput (archbishop of Philadelphia); His Grace Archbishop Emeritus Stefan Soroka, and the archbishops and bishops in the sanctuary.
The protopresbyters of the Philadelphia Archeparchy: Very Rev. Robert Hitchens, Washington Deanery; Very Rev. Mykola Ivanov, South Anthracite Deanery; Very Rev. Nestor Iwasiw, North Anthracite Deanery; Very Rev. Taras Lonchyna, New Jersey Deanery; Very Rev. John Seniw, Lehigh-Schuylkill Deanery and Very Rev. Msgr. Peter Waslo, Philadelphia Deanery will be the concelebrating priests at the altar.
Deacons will be Father Protodeacon Nazar Yaruniv; Father Deacon Paul Makar, Father Deacon Paul Spotts, Father Deacon Volodymyr Radko and Father Deacon Daniel Galadza.
His Excellency Christophe Pierre will extend greetings on behalf of the Holy Father Pope Francis and present the Papal Bull.
His Beatitude Sviatoslav will address the assembled faithful and Metropolitan Borys will give the homily to his flock as the new shepherd of the Philadelphia Archeparchy.
During the services, all the clergy of the Philadelphia Archeparchy will come forward to express their promise of obedience to the new Metropolitan as they kiss his omophorion on his right shoulder, his hand and his epigonation.
The responses to the Divine Liturgy will be sung in both the English and Ukrainian languages by the combined choirs of the parishes of the Philadelphia Archeparchy, under the direction of Mr. Stepan Szyszka choir director from the Ukrainian National Shrine of the Holy Family, Washington, DC.
The Pennsylvania East District of the Fourth Degree Knights of Columbus, Calvert Province, will provide the Color Corps.
After the Divine Liturgy, Metropolitan Gudziak will greet guests during a reception on the grounds of the Ukrainian American Citizens Association to which all the clergy, religious and faithful are invited.
Archbishop Gudziak was ordained to the priesthood on November 26, 1998.
He was appointed bishop of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church by Pope Benedict XVI to serve the faithful in France, Belgium, the Netherlands, Luxemburg and Switzerland on July 21, 2012 and was ordained to the episcopacy on December 2, 2012. On January 19, 2013, Pope Benedict XVI elevated the Apostolic Exarchate of France, Benelux and Switzerland for the Ukrainians to the status of a full apostolic eparchy (the equivalent of a diocese), with the name of Eparchy of Saint Vladimir in Paris.
Borys Gudziak was born on November 24, 1960 in Syracuse, New York, the son of immigrants from Ukraine. He earned a bachelor’s degree in philosophy and biology from Syracuse University in 1980 and then studied in Rome, in the circle of Patriarch Josyf Slipyj. He received a STB degree in theology from the Pontifical Urban University in 1983 and then returned to America to pursue a doctorate in Slavic and Byzantine Cultural History at Harvard University, which he successfully defended in 1992. In 1995 he earned a licentiate in Eastern Christian studies from the Pontifical Oriental Institute.
In 1992, he moved to Lviv where he founded and directed (1992-2002) the Institute of Church History. In 1993, he was appointed Chairman of the Commission for the Renewal of the Lviv Theological Academy. From 1995 until 2000, he served as Vice Rector of the Lviv Theological Academy, then as Rector from 2000 to 2002. In that year, Gudziak became Rector of the Ukrainian Catholic University (founded on the basis of the Academy), and in 2013 its President.
The Enthronement and Hierarchical Divine Liturgy will be the highlight of a week of special events from Sunday June 2 through Sunday, June 9, 2019 of Prayer, Celebration, Unity and Mission Outreach: From Heart to Heart.
The Ukrainian Catholic Church is the largest of the Eastern Catholic Churches. In the United States, the Ukrainian Catholic Church consists of the Philadelphia Archeparchy, with a population of 13,000 faithful in 62 parishes and 2 missions located in Delaware, eastern Pennsylvania, the District of Columbia, Maryland, New Jersey and Virginia. Other suffragan eparchial sees of the Philadelphia Metropolitan Province are Stamford, Connecticut, St. Nicholas in Chicago, Illinois and St. Josaphat in Parma, Ohio.