Report Illustrates Global Ministry of the Church: Synod Discusses Financial Statements of the Church

September 13, 2023, 10:31 47

On the seventh day of the meetings of the Synod of Bishops of the UGCC, September 12, 2023, the bishops considered current economic issues related to the development and ministry of the Ukrainian-Greek Catholic Church.

Report Illustrates Global Ministry of the Church: Synod Discusses Financial Statements of the Church

The main speaker was Fr. Lubomyr Yavorsky, Patriarchal Economist of the UGCC, together with Ms. Natalia Parkulab, Head of the Financial Department of the Patriarchal Curia of the UGCC. First, the bishops listened to and accepted the financial report of the Patriarchal Curia of the UGCC for 2022.

“It was one of the most severe years because, in 2022, the Russian Federation began a full-scale invasion of Ukraine. Naturally, initially, it caused a lot of chaos and confusion. From the very first days, we received a substantial of aid from various organizations that needed to be coordinated. At the same time, in response to current challenges, it was necessary to launch various projects aimed at supporting and helping people impacted by the war. So all this was documented in the report submitted to the bishops,” says Fr. Lubomyr Yavorsky in a comment to the press service of the Secretariat of the Synod of Bishops of the UGCC.

After that, Fr. Lubomyr reported on the church-wide collections, including “Andriyiv Hrish” (Andrew’s Pence).

His Beatitude Lubomyr Husar established the Andriyiv Hrish initiative to enable this foundation to promptly and effectively assist the Head of the Church in serving a neighbor, especially those in the greatest need. Today, through this foundation, the Father and Head of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church addresses the most pressing needs of Ukraine’s defenders and the victims of the Russian war against Ukraine.

The speaker also presented the current status of other church-wide funds, such as the Mission Fund, the Priestly Solidarity Fund, and the Bishops’ Solidarity Fund.

Fr. Lubomyr presented the activities of the Patriarchal Foundation “Wise Cause” and handed out presentation albums. “I thanked the bishops for their solidarity because the Patriarchal Foundation implemented projects with the help of our eparchies and faithful. We were all united, consolidated, and in solidarity with each other. It enabled the Patriarchal Foundation to create several projects at once: evacuation of internally displaced persons from the frontline areas, their accommodation through the created network of shelters, spiritual and rehabilitation trips for IDPs to shrines and sights of Western Ukraine, preparation and distribution of food and hygiene kits, creation of a logistics center of the UGCC, the establishment of the Good Samaritan and Wound Healing Centers, running a charity kitchen in Kyiv region, activities of the UGCC Counseling Center, providing medical institutions with medicines, transport and equipment, spiritual and rehabilitation summer camp for children from the frontline areas ‘Free Children,’” the priest said.

Наталія Паркулаб, керівник Фінансового департаменту УГКЦНаталія Паркулаб, керівник Фінансового департаменту УГКЦ

Natalia Parkulab, Head of the Financial Department of the Patriarchal Curia of the UGCC

“The bishops positively noted the comprehensiveness of the report. Several bishops even emphasized that they needed such reports at the level of their eparchies or exarchates. Therefore, we will consider a church-wide unified financial statement in the future. Indeed, the report shows not only the quality of the funds used or the effectiveness of specific structures but, above all, the ministry of the Church the global ministry of the Church. When you prepare a report, you can immediately see the amount of resources attracted or projects implemented. In this context, it is also important for the Church to foster mutual accountability. It will make it possible to consolidate information about our entire Church, about how it operates, serves, and works,” Fr. Lubomyr shares his view.

At the end of the conversation, Fr. Lubomyr Yavorsky emphasized the importance for the Church to maintain transparency and be an example of managing finances in today’s Ukrainian society. “We are at the point of transformation in Ukraine. So, first, the Church is a moral indicator designed to set a certain tone. Why do we pay taxes as the Patriarchal Curia? Why do we officially pay salaries to our employees? Why do we conduct all our projects officially and legally? We want to set an example, so we must start with ourselves. Only then can we speak to our conscience when we comply with everything ourselves. At the same time, and this is the second thing, we see the experience of financial scandals in the Church. They can turn people away from the Church. Therefore, we need to make our activities as transparent as possible so that our faithful and clergy see that the Church is not a closed system, but an open one that reports and sets certain trends,” the patriarchal economist of the UGCC emphasized.

Press service of the Secretariat of the Synod of Bishops of the UGCC

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