Pray for the Greek Catholic Church in Eastern Ukraine.
(Vatican Radio) Twenty-five years after its legalization in the former Soviet Union, the leader of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church says his Church is faced once again with the possibility of being outlawed in parts of Ukraine.
The Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church marked the 25th anniversary of its legalization this past week. Cardinal Christoph Schönborn of Vienna was in Kiev on Wednesday for the celebration.
But in an interview with Austrian Catholic news agency Kathpress, Major Archbishop Sviatoslav Shevchuk remarked on the recent developments in Crimea regarding his Church. Russia’s annexation of Crimea in March after an unconstitutional referendum is not recognized by international law.
“The local so-called authorities issued a special law, which obliged each religious community to renew its registration and perhaps for the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church it is very difficult to get a new registration,” said Archbishop Shevchuk. “That means that starting in January 2015, we simply will be (outside) the law.”
“It is some sort of irony because we are celebrating 25 years of our legalization in the former Soviet Union but right now in some parts of Ukraine, we will lose the legal right to exist,” he continued.