Great Lion of our Ukrainian Catholic Church
July 31, 2015
L’viv, Ukraine – Wednesday, July 29 2015, the city marked the one-hundred-and-fiftieth anniversary birthday of one of the great lions of the XXth century, Andriy Sheptytsky. A monument to Metropolitan Andriy Sheptytsky, was solemnly unveiled in the city of Lion. Catholic pilgrims from Ukraine and abroad came to mark this event. The celebration started with the Divine Liturgy at St. George Cathedral. The unveiling of the monument begun with the Anthem of Ukraine. The Presisdent P. Poroshenko in his speech said: “Today we are restoring historical justice and finally open the monument to Metropolitan Andriy Sheptytsky in Lviv. The best monument to the Metropolitan would be the independent Ukraine that moves towards the family of European nations.”
Patriarch Sviatoslav called the unveiling of the Metropolitan’s monument a historical event. He said the attempts to honor Metropolitan Andriy were an integral part of the national liberation struggle of our people. Before World War II, Ukrainians had made an attempt to erect a monument to the Metropolitan at the same place, but these intentions were not successful. During his life one monument to Sheptytskyy designed by Sergey Litvinenko was installed in the National Museum and another in Theological Academy, but like many other monuments in Lviv they were destroyed by soviets.
“Many residents of Lviv remember the 90's when the people brought flowers to the places where the monuments to Taras Shevchenko and Metropolitan Andriy were to be raised. Many of you remember that here in St. George’s square was a mountain of flowers, candles and an inscription: “Here the monument to Metropolitan Andriy will be raised.” And now this has come be true,” said Patriarch Sviatoslav.
The construction of the monument to Metropolitan Andrey, began in May 2015. The author of sculpture is Andriy Koverko, the designers are the architects Ihor Kuzmak and Mychailo Fedyk. The statue of the Metropolitan is cast from bronze. It is 3.6m (12 feet) high. Metropolitan Andriy is depicted in monastic robe, belted with a leather belt the same way many people remember him.
Some 20,000 people came to honor their Father in Faith Great Lion of our Ukrainian Catholic Church.