Patriarch Lubomyr holds press conference for Odesa’s journalists


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On March 10, His Beatitude Lubomyr, head of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church, held a press conference for Odesa's journalists. He, in particular, reported that the question of constructing a church of the UGCC in Odesa has not been resolved for three years now. According to him, a church cannot be built for there is no land. "Three years ago when I was in Odesa, the matter of a land lot seemed to be resolved. But, unfortunately, there is no land even now. I asked the mayor and the regional authority - they say: "difficulties of bureaucracy"... Although, it is not quite clear what they mean. But, exactly, "difficulties of bureaucracy" hinder the Greek Catholic community from obtaining a lot land to build a church," said the head of the UGCC.

Besides, His Beatitude noted that the Odesa regional council and the city council say that the local authority is interested in quickly resolving the question of giving the land, but that there are "‘difficulties of bureaucracy,' - not in Odesa, but in Kyiv." Meantime, according to the chancellor of Odesa-Crimean Exarchate of the UGCC Fr. Volodymyr Zhdan, 1% of Odesa habitants (approximately 10 thousand people) are Greek Catholics.

According to the chancellor, in the Odesa region Greek Catholic churches are in Illichivsk, Rozdilna, village Semykhatky. In the city Yuzhne a church is being constructed, while in the regional centers Berezivka and Ivanikva questions of obtaining of land are being resolved. In Odesa the Greek Catholics come to the "chapel" (Church of Andrew the First Called) on Pervozvannoho St., 22-24. In addition, on Lanzheron's Uzviz is a Greek Catholic parish in the "mission of marine apostolate."

His Beatitude Lubomyr, answering the question of journalists, said that in his opinion, there must be one official language in Ukraine - Ukrainian. He believes the language problem in Ukraine was stirred up by the politicians. "It seems to me every state has an official language that unites all, that is also the language of education, the language of intra-state communication. ...But every citizen of Ukraine has the right to communicate in a language most comfortable for him," stated the bishop.

"I lived in the USA for 20 years, many nationalities live there: Japanese, Chinese, and others. But there is one state language - English. In Italy, where I also lived for a long time, is the same situation. Italy consists of different parts but all have one state language. For me this is most understandable and natural. Another question is how to communicate. Everyone should have the choice to speak as he knows. It is absolutely a private right of everyone," concluded the hierarch.

Source: UGCC