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Ukrainian Patriarch’s National Visit to start in Perth


MEDIA RELEASE - For Immediate Release - Tuesday 16 September 2014



The global Head of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church, His Beatitude Sviatoslav (Shevchuk), will visit the Ukrainian Catholic Eparchy (diocese) and all Catholics in Australia commencing his tour in Perth on Wednesday 17th September. He will meet with Catholic bishops, church leaders, politicians and other people of good will. This is first visit to Perth of a Patriarch in nearly thirty years.

Bishop Peter Stasiuk, Eparch of the Ukrainian Catholics in Australia, New Zealand, and Oceania, has expressed his joy at the upcoming pastoral visit: “The faithful of the Eparchy have been eagerly awaiting this visit for a long time” he said.

This will be an opportunity for His Beatitude to meet the faithful of Australia who have been so supportive of the Ukrainian Church ever since they arrived in Australia in 1948.

Catholics in Australia have been praying for Ukraine during the present conflict and have been inspired by the spiritual leadership of His Beatitude Sviatoslav.

Speaking of the Patriarch’s visit to Perth, Catholic Archbishop of Perth, the Most Rev Timothy Costelloe, said: “I look forward to welcoming the Head of the Ukrainian Catholic Church to Perth at the start of his tour of Australia. I see this as a wonderful opportunity for us to continue to build on the warmth and fraternity that exists between our worshipping communities.”

While in Perth, the Patriarch will lunch with Archbishop Timothy Costelloe, and will lead a special service at the Ukrainian Church in Maylands on Thursday evening, followed by a reception in the neighbouring hall.


Notes for Editors:
1 - Contact: (Perth) James Parker 0477 365618.
2 - There are a total of 50 Ukrainian Greek Catholic bishops worldwide with more than seven and a half million faithful.
3 - The Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church is the largest Eastern Church in full union with the Holy See. On 30 March 1991, Major Archbishop Myroslav Ivan Cardinal Lubachivsky ended his exile in Rome and returned to Lviv. The Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church ended its forced clandestine existence in 1989 after a period of more than 40 years of persecution by the Soviet Authorities.
4 - Schedule Overview and Patriarch’s Biography attached
5 - Perth’s Ukrainian Church (St John the Baptist), 20 Ferguson St, Maylands, WA, 6051. Tel/Fax: (08) 9271 4711. Fr Wolodymyr Kalinecki-
6 – The last Patriarch to visit Perth was Patriarch Myroslav Lubachivskyj in March 1986.

· Perth (17th - 19th September 2014) meeting with the local parishioners and local dignitaries, including Archbishop Timothy Costelloe, Catholic Archbishop of Perth.
· Melbourne (19th – 23rd September 2014) meeting with all Ukrainian Clergy in Australia as well as with parishioners and local dignitaries
· Adelaide (23rd – 24th September 2014) meeting with parishioners and local dignitaries.
· Canberra (24th – 25th September 2014) meeting with parishioners, the Papal Ambassador and Parliamentarians, enshrining the Relics of Blessed Volodymyr Pryjma and the proclamation of the National Pilgrimage Church.
· Sydney (26th – 29th September 2014) meeting with parishioners and local dignitaries.
· Brisbane (29th – 30th September 2014) meeting with parishioners and local dignitaries plus blessing the Chapel at Marian Valley

His Beatitude Sviatoslav (Shevchuk), Head of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church
Born May 5, 1970 in Striy, Lviv region, he began his religious education in 1991-1992 at the Don Bosco theological seminary in Buenos Aires
He continued his education from 1992 to 1994 in the Lviv Theological Seminary.
Ordained a deacon on May 21, 1994 (by Bishop Fylymon Kurchaba), he was ordained a priest on June 26, 1994 (by His Beatitude Myroslav Cardinal Liubachivsky)
From 1994 to 1999 he studied at the papal university of St. Thomas Aquinas in Rome, where he received his doctoral degree summa cum laude in theological anthropology and the moral roots of theology in the Byzantine theological tradition.

From 1999 to 2000 he served as prefect of the Lviv Holy Spirit Theological Seminary. From 2000 to 2007 he was vice rector of the seminary. In 2001 he became vice-dean of the theology department at the Lviv Theological Academy (now the Ukrainian Catholic University).

In 2002 he was named head of the secretariat and personal secretary to His Beatitude Liubomyr Cardinal Husar, head of the Patriarchal Curia in Lviv.

In 2007 he was named rector of the Holy Spirit Seminary.

On January 14, 2007, His Holiness Pope Benedict XVI blessed the decision of the Synod of Bishops of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church to name Father Sviatoslav Shevchuk as auxiliary bishop of the Protection of the Blessed Mother eparchy in Buenos Aires, Argentina.

On April 10, 2010 he was named Apostolic Administrator Eparchy of Argentina.
On March 23, 2011 at an election held by the Synod of bishops of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church he was named Major Archbishop of the church. On March 24, the election was blessed by Pope Benedict XVI, He was enthroned on March 27, 2011 in Kyiv in the Patriarchal Cathedral of The Resurrection.
Most Reverend Sviatoslav Shevchuk was been elected Major Archbishop (Patriarch) at an Electoral Synod of Bishops of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church in Lviv/Bruhovitchi 21-24 March 2011, in accord with the Code of Canons of the Eastern Churches and the Particular Law of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church (UGCC). His Holiness, Pope Benedict XVI confirmed and blessed the election of Bishop Sviatoslav according to the decision of the Electoral Synod of Bishops of the UGCC on 23 March.

His Beatitude’s native language is Ukrainian. He is fluent in English, Italian, Polish, Russian, and Spanish.