The Ukrainian President’s Office expects the honorary title of ‘Righteous Among the Nations’ to be bestowed upon Metropolitan Andrey Sheptytsky, the Primate of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church (1900-1944), in the near future.
This was reported by the President’s Office on Facebook.
“Metropolitan Sheptytsky is a model of love for one’s neighbor. By saving lives during World War II, he earned the special respect of the Jewish community”, the administration said in a statement on the occasion of the 155th anniversary of the hierarch’s birth.
“We rightly expect that in the near future the name of Andrey Sheptytsky will take its place among the righteous people of the world”.
The Office of the Ukrainian President pointed out that it is difficult to find an area of Ukrainian life to which Sheptytsky did not make a contribution, from the development of the Ukrainian Church, cultural preservation and philanthropy and charity to helping orphans, caring for the youth, supporting education and developing the country’s finance system and economy.
“Long before the independence of Ukraine, Andrey Sheptytsky already saw it as an equal among equals in the circle of European States”, the message from the Ukrainian President’s Office said.
“Therefore, it is so important that those who have not yet had the opportunity to get acquainted with the personality of Andrey Sheptytsky get to know him, and those who already honour him become his true followers. Metropolitan Andrey’s work for the benefit of the Church and our people must continue in the future!”.
Metropolitan Andrey Sheptytsky was born on July 29, 1865, in the village of Prylbychi in Yavoriv district.
Throughout his ministry, he significantly rebuilt the Greek Catholic Church both in Ukraine and abroad.
Being one of the wealthiest people in Galicia, he generously sponsored Ukrainian cultural and educational societies and provided scholarships to young artists. In 1905, he founded the National Museum in Lviv and purchased a large number of exhibits for it. He supported Ukrainian economic activity and promoted the opening of cooperative societies.
As the Metropolitan of Galicia, he was a member of the Viennese Parliament and the Galician Sejm. In his youth he experienced the oppression of the Bolsheviks, and went on to learn Hebrew to better relate to the Jewish community he would shelter and fearlessly defend during Nazi persecutions.
He died on November 1, 1944, due to a severe illness.