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Speech of His Beatitude, Patriarch Gregorios III
Of Antioch and All the East, of Alexandria and of Jerusalem
During the Meeting of the Holy Synod of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church
Held after the consecration of the new Major Archbishop of Kyiv-Halych of Ukraine,
H. B. Sviatoslav (Shevchuk)

(Kyiv 28 March 2011)

Let us give thanks to the Lord for the new Major Archbishop, Sviatoslav of the Church of Christ in Ukraine. I refer once more to the substance of my speech during the enthronement of the new Head and Father of this Greek Catholic Church.

Thank you for the invitation to join you at this meeting of your Holy Synod.

We shall continue and intensify the relations between our Churches.

To that end I propose the formation of a joint theological and ecumenical commission of our two Churches.

At the next meeting of the Council of Eastern Catholic Patriarchs (which will be held in Iraq from 14 to 18 November, 2011) I undertake to put forward a proposal to formulate a joint motion, requesting the Holy See to raise the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church to the rank and title of Patriarchate.

Here and now I invite Your Beatitude, dear brother Sviatoslav, to the inauguration of our big Liqa'a cultural centre at Rabweh in Lebanon on 10 May, 2011.

I hope to organise an international Greek Catholic symposium in this Al-Liqa'a centre, under the auspices of both our Churches and our future joint theological and ecumenical commission.

I place these reflections, remarks and this ecclesial vision at the foot of the Cross that we have just venerated here in your Cathedral of the Resurrection on this Third Sunday of Great and Holy Lent, and under the protection of the Theotokos, Mary, our Mother and Protector of our Churches.

Thank you,

Gregorios III

Patriarch

Translation from French V. Chamberlain