Publishing a book during the war is like a small ray of light!

2022-05-05 19:00

On April 28, 2022, the Institute of Ecumenical Studies of the Ukrainian Catholic University held an online presentation of the collection of reports “Growing in Christ Together: The Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church and Some Aspects of Interconfessional Relations in Ukraine”. During the event spoke:

  • Rev. Ihor Shaban, Chairman of the UGCC Patriarchal Commission on Interconfessional and Interreligious Relations
  • Myroslav Marynovych, Vice-Rector of the Ukrainian Catholic University, President of the UCU Institute of Religion and Society
  • Andriy Smyrnov, Professor at the Department of History, Ostroh Academy National University

The event was moderated by Rev. Roman Fihas, a researcher at the UCU Institute of Ecumenical Studies, is the book's chief academic editor.

Myroslav Marynovych, who is also the author of one of the publications, summed up the rapid development of the ecumenical movement in Ukraine over 30 years. The war unfolding before our eyes became the impetus for determining in which direction each of the religious community wants to develop (towards dialogue and cooperation, or towards separation and secrecy). It seems that this issue is most acute today for the leaders of the UOC-MP.

Since 2020 IES has been implemented a project called the Ecumenical Formation Program (EFP). This is a training and formation program developed by the IES together with the UGCC Patriarchal Commission on Interconfessional and Interreligious Relations; It is addressed to priests, members of the UGCC ecumenical eparchial commissions and persons interested in the issue of Christian unity. Within the program, participants had the opportunity to better understand modern ecumenical processes in Ukraine and the world, were encouraged to various practical initiatives. During the 2020/2021 academic year, a series of theoretical and practical seminars and meetings were held within the EFP, which raised many important issues related to the development of the ecumenical movement in the Ukrainian context and the role of Churches, including the UGCC, in Christian unity. Speakers and participants in the EFP seminars were people from different Christian denominations, theoretics and practitioners of the ecumenical movement, for which the topic of Christian unity is a pressing issue.

The collection “Growing in Christ Together: The Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church and Some Aspects of Interconfessional Relations in Ukraine” includes reports delivered during the year at EFP seminars. In the book, they are grouped into three sections by topic. The first section includes reports covering the beginnings of ecumenical activity of Churches in Ukraine, in particular the UGCC as a leader of unifying initiatives, as well as analyzing the reasons for skepticism about ecumenism in some circles of this Church. The reports in the second section are devoted to the study of the role of UGCC leaders in different periods of ecumenical formation of this Church, analyze the impact of ideas of Christian unity on the development of the UGCC and its relations with other Churches. The third chapter deals with an important and relevant document of the UGCC - the “Ecumenical Concept of the UGCC”, as well as the challenges facing the Ukrainian Churches today.

Video of the presentation in Ukrainian

Supported by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops.