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“Dear father, anticipate meeting you in the arms of the Heavenly Father”: His Beatitude Sviatoslav at his father’s funeral

May 20, 2023, 16:01 74

I thank God for giving me and my brother Vsevolod good parents. My father always believed in the natural goodness of people. He couldn’t even fathom that someone could be unkind. His Beatitude Sviatoslav, the Father and Head of the UGCC, said this on May 20 during the Divine Liturgy with the funeral rite of his father, Yuriy Shevchuk, at the Cathedral of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary in Stryi.

 “Dear father, anticipate meeting you in the arms of the Heavenly Father”: His Beatitude Sviatoslav at his father’s funeral

“Our father and mother were a truly remarkable couple,” said the Patriarch. “For my father, my mother was the very essence of his life. Her passing deeply affected him.”

His Beatitude Sviatoslav recalled the first months of 2022 when everyone fled Kyiv because they expected an attack. “We met these first days of the war together in Kyiv. And then, on February 24, with millions of Ukrainians, my father got into a car and set off the only road of life. In Stryi, he was so happy that our empty house was crowded during the war because a family from the south of Ukraine came. And our father felt revived because he had someone to live for. But all those impacts affected his health — we diagnosed him with cancer,” said the head of the UGCC, noting that his father took the news that he was terminally ill with a calm heart.

“He was a model of faith that overcomes everything. He fought courageously to the end, so his death took us aback, deeply affecting us,” said the Primate. He said that his father especially loved and respected the nuns and thanked the Sisters Servants, the Sisters of the Holy Family, the Sisters of the Incarnate Word, especially Sister Veronika, who sacrificed herself to care for my mother here in Stryi and then left everything and went to America to care for my father.

He died in her arms.”I thank the Lord God for revealing His fatherly face to me, my brother Vsevolod, through our father Yuriy’s sacrificial, holy, human, Christian fatherhood. I remember my father’s embrace. I know that God’s embrace will be much sweeter for all of us. Therefore, today I want to give our Father into the Fatherly arms of our Heavenly Father. Dear father, we anticipate meeting you in the arms of the Heavenly Father. May your memory live on forever! Christ is risen!” said His Beatitude Sviatoslav.

The UGCC Department for Information

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