Parish Festivals Bring Community Together.

On Saturday, June 22, 2019 beyond our expectations, the church grounds of the Assumption Ukrainian Catholic Church in Perth Amboy, NJ swelled with neighbors and those who traveled quite a distance to appreciate Ukrainian culture, crafts, foods and entertainment at the 7th Annual Parish Festival. Throughout the sun filled day, more than 3,000 guests, could be seen enjoying themselves, eating the delicious Ukrainian food, and there certainly was plenty for everyone, listening to lively Ukrainian music, visiting our beautiful church at the church tours, socializing with friends and neighbors, and enjoying the entertainment of our incredible Ukrainian dance performances.

Fr. Ivan Turyk, the pastor of the church said that “festival creates an atmosphere of hospitality”, as people can come and have fun, and at the same time, it becomes an expression of our faith.

God blessed us with perfect weather which helped to bring many people to the Festival. The reviews were wonderful; a lot of people told us that, “It sure is a big crowd this year,” and “We had such a great time.” We were honored with the presence of NJ Congressman Frank Pallone, Mrs. Wilda Diaz, the mayor of the City of Perth Amboy and His Grace Bishop Andriy Rabiy, auxiliary bishop for the Ukrainian Catholic Archeparchy who opened the festival with his blessing and prayer.

A great time and great food was enjoyed by all those who attended. We served 6 thousands of purohys, 1, 550 Stuffed Cabbages, 250 pounds of kovbasa, 80 cases of the Ukrainian beer ( 20 bottles in a case), hundreds of pieces of homemade desserts and we used 415 pounds of meat to prepare our delicious shish kebab.

It was amazing to see so many people enjoying the day together! It was also wonderful to know that we have so many hardworking parishioners and school parents who are doing their best to help keep our church and school financially stable. It was another proof that Assumption Parish Community shines when we all work together as one family.

Women’s Evening of Prayer.

The St. Ann Society of Ukrainian Catholic Church of the Assumption in Perth Amboy sponsored a Women’s Evening of Prayer on May 7, 2019. Catholic women from the surrounding communities joined together with Assumption parishioners who participated with fervent and prayerful song in a Moleben to the Blessed Mother of God with responses sung alternately in both English and Ukrainian. The homilist for the evening was Very Rev. John Seniw, pastor of St. John the Baptist Ukrainian Catholic Church in Northampton, PA., who offered his meditation on Blessed are the poor of heart: The life of Mary.

The members of Altar Rosary Societies, Ladies Guilds, and Sisterhoods of numerous Roman Catholic parishes joined with Assumption parishioners in contemplation of how Mary’s life is a reflection of what her Divine Son teaches in each of The Beatitudes. For those who were not familiar with the Theotokos of the Eastern Church, Father’s informative homily explained how, in the Ukrainian Catholic Church, the Bohoroditsya is revered and not worshipped, as many misinformed Protestant Christians believe. He also explained the Marian dogmas as proclaimed in Church Councils, including the Immaculate Conception and the Assumption. At the conclusion, Fr. Ivan Turyk, pastor of Assumption Church and spiritual advisor of St. Ann Society, underscored the homily and added the visual component by pointing to the mosaic icon of the Mother of God, Oranta, who wears a handkerchief in her belt which reminds us of how she is always ready to dry our tears.

The Marian hymns for the evening, Immaculate Mary , a Roman Catholic favorite, and Always Protect Us (O Spomahay Nas) the Ukrainian Catholic selection, were sung by all in attendance, providing a unified manifestation of faith, reflective of the Universality of the Church. Following the Moleben, visitors were guests of St. Ann Society who provided a light buffet. The joint breaking of bread and fellowship with neighboring parishes reinforced a mutual love for Mary, her Divine Son, and respect for each other’s traditions.

Happy Easter!

On behalf of all our parish staff and parish leadership organizations, I wish all of you a very blessed Easter. Enjoy the weeks ahead!

Good Friday Vespers and Procession with Holy Shroud in Perth Amboy, NJ.

This year, the parishioners of the Assumption Catholic Church in Perth Amboy, NJ with many students of the Parish School, participated at the moving service called solemn Vespers with the burial procession bearing the Holy Shroud or Plashchanitsa. The “plashchanitsa” is a winding sheet with the picture of Christ’s body lying dead in the tomb. After the procession, the shroud was laid out for veneration on a replica of the sepulcher.

Pope Francis Appoints Most Rev. Borys Gudziak as new Metropolitan-Archbishop of the Ukrainian Archeparchy of Philadelphia.

On Monday, February 18th, 2019, the Vatican Information Service announced that the Holy Father has appointed Most Rev. Borys Gudziak as Archbishop of Philadelphia for Ukrainians and Metropolitan for the Ukrainian Catholic Church in USA and thus concurring with the recommendation of the appointment offered by the Synod of Ukrainian Catholic Bishops, which met in September of 2018 in Lviv, Ukraine.

The Archeparchy of Philadelphia was declared by Pope Francis as “sede vacante” following the resignation of Most Rev. Stefan Soroka on April 16, 2018. Most Rev. Andriy Rabiy was named by Pope Francis as the Apostolic Administrator of the Ukrainian Catholic Archeparchy of Philadelphia until the appointment of the new Metropolitan-Archbishop.

At the present time Most Rev. Borys Gudziak serves as the eparch of St. Volodymyr the Great Ukrainian Catholic Eparchy, which includes France, Belgium, the Netherlands, Luxemburg and Switzerland. He is the founder and president of the Ukrainian Catholic University in Lviv, Ukraine. In addition, Archbishop Borys is the head of Department of External Church Relations of the Ukrainian Catholic Church.

Bishop Andriy Rabiy, Apostolic Administrator, Bishop John Bura, Auxiliary Bishop, clergy, monastic orders and faithful of the Archeparchy of Philadelphia wholeheartedly and joyfully welcome the news and invite everyone to the installation of Most Rev. Borys Gudziak as the seventh Metropolitan-Archbishop for the Ukrainian Catholic Archeparchy of Philadelphia, which will take place on Tuesday, June 4, 2019, at the Ukrainian Catholic Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception in Philadelphia, PA

Biography of Most Rev. Borys Gudziak, the  new Metropolitan-Archbishop of the Ukrainian Archeparchy of Philadelphia.

Eparch (Bishop) of the Paris Eparchy (Diocese) of St. Volodymyr the Great for France, Switzerland and Benelux (Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church), member of the Conference of French Catholic Bishops (La Conférence des évêques de France)
Head of the Department of External Church Relations and Member of the Permanent Synod of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church
President of the Ukrainian Catholic University, Lviv, Ukraine
Borys Gudziak was born in 1960 in Syracuse, New York, the son of immigrants from Ukraine. He earned a bachelor’s degree in philosophy and biology from Syracuse University in 1980 and then studied in Rome, in the circle of Patriarch Josyf Slipyj. He received a STB degree in theology from the Pontifical Urban University in 1983 and then returned to America to pursue a doctorate in Slavic and Byzantine Cultural History at Harvard University, which he successfully defended in 1992. In 1995 he earned a licentiate in Eastern Christian studies from the Pontifical Oriental Institute.  

In 1992, he moved to Lviv where he founded and directed (1992-2002) the Institute of Church History. In 1993, he was appointed Chairman of the Commission for the Renewal of the Lviv Theological Academy. From 1995 until 2000, he served as Vice Rector of the Lviv Theological Academy, then as Rector from 2000 to 2002. In that year, Gudziak became Rector of the Ukrainian Catholic University (founded on the basis of the Academy), and in 2013 its President.

Borys Gudziak was ordained as a priest  on November 26, 1998.

In 2012 he was appointed Bishop of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church in France, Belgium, the Netherlands, Luxemburg and Switzerland. Bishop Borys also serves as a member of the Permanent Synod of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church and as a head of the Department of External Church Relations. In 2016, with the help of American consultants with experience in church administration as well as business, Bishop Borys launched a program of strategic pastoral planning to create an eparchial vision for its future activity and growth, increased the number of priests and parishes, established a new financial model for the eparchy’s sustainability, and widely engaged the laity.

During the 2013-2014 Maidan movement for human dignity, Bishop Borys was an active supporter and appeared regularly on leading global TV channels and media providing expert commentary.  

Bishop Borys has received numerous awards and distinctions. In 2015 he became a Cavalier of the Order of Legion of Honor (Chevalier de l’Ordre national de la Légion d’honneur), the highest decoration in France. In 2016 he was awarded the Jan Nowak-Jeziorański Award in Wroclaw, Poland, in recognition for his work in shaping civil society in Central and Eastern Europe. In 2018 he received an honorary doctorate from his alma mater, Syracuse University, and a literary award from the Ukrainian chapter of PEN International. He travels globally with lectures and talks on theology, history, spirituality, education, society, and current challenges in Ukraine.

He speaks English, Ukrainian, Italian, Polish, French, Russian, and German. Bishop Gudziak is the author of a number of scholarly works, among them a doctoral dissertation on sixteenth-century church history, published as Crisis and Reform: The Kyivan Metropolitanate, the Patriarchate of Constantinople, and the Genesis of the Union of Brest (Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 1998), as well as numerous articles in European and North American academic journals. He has also penned articles in popular magazines, newspapers, commentary on political, cultural, and religious affairs, position papers on academic curricula and educational reform, and introductions to scholarly and spiritual publications. Bishop Borys is among the authors of A Pope Francis Lexicon,edited by Cindy Wooden and Joshua J McElwee (Collegeville, Minn.: Liturgical Press, 2017) and a collection of essays about the future of Europe. 

He continues to be an active member of the “Plast” Ukrainian Scouting Organization and the head of its supervisory board. Bishop Borys Gudziak is an honorary citizen of Lviv.…

Theophany Feast

On the feast day of Theophany, following the Divine Liturgy, the Great Blessing of the Water took place at Assumption Catholic Church in Perth Amboy, NJ. This year, the faithful together with their pastor Fr. Ivan Turyk celebrated this holy day outside the church and in front of the Cross that was carved from solid ice. The feast commemorates the baptism of Jesus in the Jordan River, as well as the manifestation of the Holy Trinity. It also marks the beginning of Christ’s public ministry. Following the blessing of water, all the faithful were invited to the church hall to enjoy the parish hospitality, homemade vine and yummy shish kebab luncheon. At the luncheon three thousand dollars were raised for the military medical center in the town of Irpin, Kyiv region, where the wounded Ukrainian soldiers are being treated. At the conclusion of our celebration and a luncheon that raised funds for our soldiers in Ukraine, we all in our hearts heard the Lord’s voice, “You are my beloved sons and daughters, in you I am well pleased.

St. Ann’s Society Christmas Party

The wonderful Christmas celebration was held on Sunday, January 13 for members of St. Ann’s Society of the Assumption Catholic Church in Perth Amboy, NJ. The afternoon of fellowship and sharing a meal made for a festive and fun time! May God bless all ladies abundantly for their loving service to our church.