Ukraine’s Twenty Third Anniversary of Independence Commemorated In Perth Amboy

On Saturday, August 23, 2014 over 100 persons of Ukrainian descent together with many others gathered at the Perth Amboy, New Jersey City Hall to raise the blue and yellow flag of Ukraine in acknowledgement, commemoration, and celebration of the 23rd anniversary of the Independence of Ukraine. Many of the attendees were dressed in the traditional and colorfully embroidered Ukrainian blouses, shirts, and dresses.
Mr. Michael Szpyhulsky, Principal of Assumption Catholic School in Perth Amboy, served as master of ceremonies. The opening prayer and remarks were offered by Reverend Ivan Turyk, Pastor of Assumption Ukrainian Catholic Church in Perth Amboy. He recalled the long time suffering that Ukrainians have endured at the hands of others, including religious persecution and the lack of human rights. Father Turyk asked those in attendance to continue to pray for peace and to reach out to American governmental representatives to do more in supporting the Ukrainian nation in its independence and in its continued quest for a free and open democracy. The Assumption Church Choir “Boyan” followed his words with the singing of “God Bless America”. New Jersey State Senator Sam Thompson of the 12th District addressed the people.
Other speakers were Mr. Oleksiy Budukevych, Manager of the Perth Amboy branch of the Ukrainian National Federal Credit Union, and Mr. Alexander Gologovski, a naturalized US citizen who travels to his homeland several times each month to deliver aid to families that have suffered under horrendous conditions resulting from the conflict with mercenary rebel forces in Eastern Ukraine. He also supports activities to prevent human rights violations.  Mrs. Melanie Fedynyshyn, president of St. Ann Society of Assumption Church, was keynote speaker. She reviewed the contributions that Ukrainian immigrants and Ukrainian Americans have made to the United States of America as well as to the city of Perth Amboy.
Mayor Wilda Diaz read and presented a proclamation to Reverend Turyk. A group of children dressed in traditional Ukrainian costumes offered a Ukrainian flag to be raised and flown on the City Hall Circle flag pole. Choir “Boyan” sang the Ukrainian national anthem. As the ceremony concluded the crowd sang “Bozhe Velyky Yedyny”, the spiritual anthem of Ukraine, which asks for God’s help in troubled times.