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“To believe means to touch the fountain of life”: Head of the UGCC at the Ivano-Frankivsk Theological Seminary

November 19, 2023, 13:03 27

“Do not be afraid, only believe.” These words are addressed to you today, brother seminarians. Outstandingly, they signify the goal, the task of your life, education, and upbringing in the seminary. The Father and Head of the UGCC said this during a sermon at the Ivano-Frankivsk Theological Seminary named after the Holy Martyr Josaphat, where he presided over the Liturgy to mark the 130th anniversary of the first mention of the foundation of the formation institution, the 400th anniversary of the martyrdom of St. Josaphat and the 380th anniversary of his beatification.

 “To believe means to touch the fountain of life”: Head of the UGCC at the Ivano-Frankivsk Theological Seminary

Contemplating the Word of God, in which Christ appears as the source of life and resurrection, His Beatitude Sviatoslav proposes to delve into this mysterious reality through the words of the Apostle Paul. He said: “Christ is our peace,” because Jesus knocked down the wall that separated people, overcame and destroyed enmity, and reconciled man with God and man with man.

More than that, the Primate explained the essence of the profound words ‘Do not be afraid, only believe’ in the current circumstances:

“These profound words resonate in the hearts of the Ukrainian people, who are experiencing war in a specific way today. Because we are all afraid every day, we should learn to live in danger of death. Every minute, we must be spiritually prepared to face the eternal God.”

According to His Beatitude Sviatoslav, ‘Do not be afraid, only believe’ is directed in a special way to everyone today: to Ukrainian soldiers and their families, who are awaiting good news from the soldiers as if they were waiting for God’s mercy, and to the authorities, as well as to the seminary brothers.

On the occasion of the 400th anniversary of his martyrdom, His Beatitude Sviatoslav recalled the figure of the holy martyr Josaphat. Noteworthy is the strength of this man’s faith-driven initiative, which granted his people access to the wellspring of life, opened access to the source of life for his people, and shaped the history of Eastern Europe, the history of unity between Christians in these lands.

Subsequently, the Father and Head of the UGCC addressed the seminarians of the Ivano-Frankivsk Theological Seminary:

“Dear brothers, you have a task in the seminary to learn how to touch Christ,” said His Beatitude Sviatoslav. “After graduating from the seminary, you should not just be those who speak about Christ, but those who bring Him to people. Preaching means opening access to the Father through the Son by the power and work of the Holy Spirit, as the Apostle Paul tells us today.”

The UGCC Department for Information,
photo by the Information Department of the Ivano-Frankivsk Archeparchy of the UGCC

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