Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Blessed Martyr Vasyl Velychkovsky

Блаженний Священномученик Василь Величковський, Blessed Martyr Vasyl (Basil) Velychkovsky, was born on June 1, 1903 into a priestly family in Western Ukraine. His father was a priest, as were both of his grandfathers. After serving as a rifleman in World War I, Vasyl entered the Major Seminary in Lviv, Ukraine. He was ordain a deacon by Metropolitan Andrey Sheptytsky in 1924 and joined the Redemptorist Congregation. On October 9, 1925, he was ordained to the priesthood by the Most Reverend Josyf Botsian, Bishop of Lutsk. After resisting polonization and the oppression of both Nazism and, in particular, Communism, which at times included being tortured and other serious physical and mental hardships, he was secretly consecrated bishop by Metropolitan Josyf Slipyj in a Moscow hotel room on February 4, 1963.

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Novena to Blessed Vasyl Velychkovsky

I am inviting you to join me in a novena for the intention of the restoration of my wife’s health through the intercession of Blessed Martyr Vasyl Velychkovsky (Блаженний Священномученик Василь Величковський). The novena will begin on June 18th, and lead up to his feast day on June 27th.

This is the prayer:

O Lord God, You are praised by the whole world for the marvellous works in your saints. I thank you for the grace you gave to Blessed Martyr Vasyl Velychkovsky to be a faithful witness to You unto the point of death. Through his intercession I ask for the following favour […] for your Name is glorified forever. Amen.

Saturday, June 13, 2015

Catholic Church, Est. 33 A.D.

I have often seen shirts, signs, and other propaganda (this is not necessarily a bad word, e.g. Sacra Congregatio de Propaganda Fide) that say “Catholic Church” or even “Roman Catholic Church,” and then “Est. 33 A.D.” or something to this effect. The message being that the Roman Catholic Church was established on the Day of Pentecost after Christ ascended into heaven. Some such propaganda even suggests that it was Christ Himself who established the Catholic Church in 33 A.D. There is some validity to this, but it is a bit complex, so most don’t understand it. How it is generally understood, particularly by the manufacturers of these products, likely gives Roman Catholics a feeling of superiority, other catholics in acknowledged union with the Roman Church some feelings of inferiority or even offence, and the rests of orthodox catholics some offence and even bitterness. Not a good message to foster feelings of unity among the one, holy, catholic, and apostolic Church.