Not many parishes in Canberra could boast an active congregation of four generations but on Sunday 28 July, 2013, St Volodymyr’s Ukrainian Catholic Church celebrated the feast of its patron with living proof that the spirit that founded the community in Canberra and Queanbeyan in the 1940s and 1950s is alive and thriving.
The solemn occasion was marked with Divine Liturgy and Parastas for deceased parishioners, as well as Great Vespers with Lytia on Saturday 27 July. Divine Liturgy and the renewal of Baptismal vows was lead by Fr. Andriy and Fr. Felix Figurek from Melboune on the Sunday. Under the leadership of Ivan Mijenovic, the beautiful voices of the Choir of St Volodymyr, Canberra filled the church and invited all to participate in the grace and peace afforded us in the sacraments.
The festivities culminated in a lunch in the hall. It was a splendid three course affair planned and prepared by Irena Schorsch. Irena was assisted in the kitchen by Halina Zachara, Joan Stowpiuk, Fidelis Lysewycz and Zenia Kraus. By mid-afternoon, the hall was a-buzz and Peter Lutak, who was, as always, an attentive and thoroughly entertaining MC, guided us through coffee and cake, as well as speeches from guests and group representatives, songs from Fr. Andriy and the traditional raffle.
On a feast day on which we remember our Baptismal vows and the great gift given to Ukraine by St Volodymir over a thousand years ago, it was fitting that the parish participate in a community event that likewise commemorates the lives and work of so many who have come to Australia from Ukraine. Our parish encompasses four generations of Ukrainian Catholics who have built a magnificent church, have fostered a wonderful community and who continue to bequeath their faith to younger generations through a deep love of family and culture.
It was impossible to be a part of the weekend’s celebrations and not notice the kindness and generosity of all who volunteered and contributed to the cleaning, donations of raffle prizes, gifts and food, running of the meals and general preparations. Fr Andriy and the Parish Council would like to thank everyone who attended and supported the occasion. We look forward to seeing you all again soon at our Divine Liturgies, common prayer and parish events.
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