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CORRESPONDENT

Catholic Church In Ukraine Suffers At Russian Hands

John Gizzi By Tuesday, 14 March 2023 06:28 PM EDT Current | Bio | Archive

A leader of one of the largest Ukrainian churches charged Tuesday that Catholics were facing particular retribution at the hands of Russian invaders.

“Every time there is Russian occupation in Ukraine, the Catholic Church suffers,” the Most Rev. Borys Gudziak, Metropolitan Archbishop of Philadelphia of the Ukrainian Catholic Church, told the National Catholic Prayer Breakfast in Washington.

The prelate told the standing room only crowd at the Washington Hilton that in every of Russian-occupied territory in the Donbas region of Ukraine, “there is no Catholic activity.”

Gudziak went on to hush his audience by citing the plight of two Ukrainian Catholic priests who disappeared from sight on Nov. 29 while serving in the port city of Berdyansk —part of the Zaporizhzhia region of southeaster Ukraine, which has been under Russian occupation since troops invaded Ukraine more than a year ago.

Father Ivan Levitskyi and Father Bohdan Heleta, both of whom were among the last priests in the region and providing pastoral assistance to their fellow Ukrainians, have been detained. As to their fate, Archbishop Gudziak simply said: “No one knows.”

But the Syracuse-born prelate did say that with more than 14 million Ukrainians forced from their homes by the Russians, more than 6 million have nonetheless been “absorbed by society in solidarity.”

“[Ukrainians] are sharing what you send over,” he said, citing the medical supplies and food sent by groups such as Catholic Charities, the Knights of Columbus, and the Catholic Relief Services.

The messages from the people Archbishop Gudziak has talked to when in Ukraine, he said, are “thank the Americans” and “we should continue to help.”

Under the spiritual leadership of the Pope in Rome, the Ukrainian Catholic Church represents a majority of Catholics in Ukraine. Other Ukrainians belong to the Latin Church, Ruthenian Greek Catholic Church, or the Armenian Catholic Church.

John Gizzi is chief political columnist and White House correspondent for Newsmax. For more of his reports, Go Here Now.
 

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John-Gizzi
A leader of one of the largest Ukrainian churches charged Tuesday that Catholics were facing particular retribution at the hands of Russian invaders. "Every time there is Russian occupation in Ukraine, the Catholic Church suffers," the Most Rev. Borys Gudziak, Metropolitan...
catholic church, ukraine, russia
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2023-28-14
Tuesday, 14 March 2023 06:28 PM
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