Ukrainian Catholics worship together, determined to keep age-old liturgy alive

Kellene Goff receives Communion from Fr. Richard Janowicz. During the pandemic he has used wooden spoons, a new one for each communicant. He later burns the spoons. Goff is a Roman Catholic: The two rites are in full communion with one another. (Kristen Hannum/Catholic Sentinel)MOUNT ANGEL, OREGON — A shady drive, lined with mossy Douglas fir trees, leads to the Goff family farm, with its century-old farmhouse and groves of filberts.

On the last Sunday in August the afternoon scene included the glint of the altar servers’ gold robes, chairs arranged under birches, masked worshippers patiently waiting and clutches of children making the most of the last moments before the liturgy began.

Father Richard Janowicz stood in prayer at a makeshift altar.

The priest, longtime pastor of Nativity of the Mother of God Ukrainian Catholic Parish in Springfield, made the trip to the Goff farm to celebrate a Mass with the Andrey Sheptytsky Ukrainian Catholic Apostolate of Portland. This was the group’s first anniversary.

After the Mass, Father Janowicz described the apostolate as being a little like the hopeful, would-be founders of a mission that doesn’t yet exist. “They have a great dedication to keeping the prayer life and to grow, despite the many challenges of this past year,” he said.

The apostolate includes people like Nada Holovcuk, who worshipped in Ukrainian-rite churches in Bosnia as a child.

“When you go to a service you grew up with, it’s close to your heart,” she said.

 

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Teachings of Christ

“Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God." (Matthew 5:9 ESV)

Saint Nicholas of Myra

The truth of your deeds has revealed you to your flock, * as a rule of faith, an image of meekness, and a teacher of abstinence. * Therefore, you attained the heights through humility, * and riches through poverty. * O Father and Hierarch Nicholas, * pray to Christ God that our souls may be saved. (Troparion, Tone 4)

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit, now and ever, and to the ages of ages. Amen.

In Myra, You were shown to be a servant of the sacred things, O Holy Nicholas, * for, fulfilling the Gospel of Christ, you, O Venerable, laid down your life for your people, * and saved the innocent from death. * Therefore, you were sanctified as a great initiate of the grace of God. (Kontakion, Tone 3)

Random Proverb

"Blessed is the one who finds wisdom, and the one who gets understanding, for the gain from her is better than gain from silver and her profit better than gold." (Proverbs 3:13,14 ESV)

Pray Without Ceasing

Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner.

Wisdom from the Church Fathers

Self-accusation before God is something that is very necessary for us; and humility of heart is extremely advantageous in our lives, above all at the time of prayer. For prayer requires great attention and needs a proper awareness, otherwise it will turn out to be unacceptable and rejected, and 'it will be turned back empty' to our bosom.

Martyrius of Edessa