Українська Првославна Ліга УПЦ США Провела Конвенцію в Цифровому Форматі
Ukrainian Orthodox League of the UOC of the USA Holds Online Jr. and Sr. Conventions
Members of the Ukrainian Orthodox League (UOL) of the USA gathered via teleconference for their Annual Convention. This was the 73rd Annual Convention for the Senior UOL and the 59th Annual Convention for the Junior UOL. Plans to gather in the Philadelphia area for this event were cancelled in the Spring, due to Coronavirus concerns.
Senior UOL President Karen Ferraro welcomed the approximately 60 attendees to the abbreviated single-day virtual event that included combined Senior/Junior, Junior-only, and Senior-only sessions. The UOL was honored to have both His Eminence Metropolitan Antony and His Eminence Archbishop Daniel present for the entire day, from 9AM until 3:30PM.
Along with conducting the normal business of the convention, the entire convention body listened intently to the Hierarchal Address of His Eminence Metropolitan Antony, whose words of love and hope inspired all. While the Juniors went off to their own business session, led by Junior President Alexis Naumenko, the Seniors discussed the details of the 2019-2020 Financial Report and the proposed 2020-2021 UOL budget, impacted by the lack of an in-person Convention and the benefit of the fundraising normally done by the host chapter. Josh Oryhon, Camp Manager of All Saints Camp, gave the Senior UOL a detailed report on the positive steps taken to provide virtual camp experiences to our youth this summer. All Saints Camp continues its Capital Campaign and the UOL is committed to making a significant contribution this year toward its overall $25,000 pledge.
In the afternoon, the Junior UOL was honored to have Father Moses Berry speak on the topic of Understanding Today’s Racial Injustice Matters from an Orthodox perspective. Father Moses’ talk can be viewed on the League’s Facebook page. The Senior UOL made its presentation of a check for more than $10,000 to St. Andrew Ukrainian Orthodox Society with proceeds from the 2020 Souper Bowl Sunday fundraiser, held by 20 parishes across the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the USA. Protodeacon Ihor Mahlay spoke of recent donations from St. Andrew Society to flood victims in Western Ukraine.
The UOL’s annual Essay Contest had 67 entries, compared with 121 last year, with the change relating to the cancelling of in-person Church School classes. For the first time, an international entry was received from Romania, highlighting the reach of social media. Winners were awarded laminated Icons, which will be mailed to them.
The Very Reverend Protopresbyter Stephen Hallick-Holutiak Senior Recognition Award was presented to Michael Nakonachny, from Parma, Ohio. This award, originally named Orthodox of the Year, was given to Michael in view of his work as chairman of the 2019 UOL Convention at All Saints Camp and his continued devotion to and support of All Saints Camp in Emlenton, PA.
The Metro J. Baran Achievement Award was presented to Natalie Kapeluck Nixon from Carnegie, Pennsylvania, for outstanding service to the youth of the UOC of USA. Natalie, the National Youth Director for the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the USA, was presented this award for the innovative daily ministry she set up at the national level for three different age groups in a virtual format in the midst of the Coronavirus/COVID-19 pandemic.
2020 Senior Chapter of the Year was awarded to Saints Peter and Paul Chapter in Youngstown, Ohio. This chapter raised over $22,000 for their parish in the past 12 months. They sponsored 5 free community dinners for the needy and cleaned/updated their church hall kitchen in preparation for their 100th Anniversary celebration.
The Very Reverend Volodymyr Bukata Award is presented to a Junior UOL member who has done outstanding work toward accomplishing the goals and aims of the UOL on a national, regional, chapter, or local church level. This year’s winner was Natalia Novicky, from Youngstown, Ohio. Natalia has been a great role model and leader for members of her local Junior Chapter and served as President this year. She worked hard to achieve the goals of service to the parish, community, and the church.
The Philadelphia Junior Chapter was awarded Junior Chapter of the Year honors. Among their achievements were donations of more then $1500 to charity, collecting arts and crafts supplies for Orphanages in Ukraine, and collecting 600 pounds of food for a Philadelphia food bank. In the past few months, they have spent countless hours packing up and hauling food for multiple Pop-up Food Pantries sponsored by their home parish, St. Vladimir Cathedral in Philadelphia.
The UOL awarded over $13,000 in scholarships through the Lynn Sawchuk-Sharon Kuzbyt (LSSK) Memorial Scholarship fund. This year’s recipients were Natalia Novicky from Youngstown; Alexis Naumenko from Philadelphia, and Dennis Hrytsay from Philadelphia.
The UOL presented $6,000 from the Metropolitan John Scholarship Fund to St. Sophia Ukrainian Orthodox Theological Seminary full-time students Subdeacon Mykola Zomchak, Subdeacon Ihor Protsak, Subdeacon Yaroslav Bilohan, Subdeacon Myroslav Mykytyuk, Seminarian Pavlo Vysotskyi, Seminarian Andrii Vatrych, and Seminarian Maksym Zhuravchyk, and part-time students Subdeacon Volodymyr Pichkurov, Deacon Evan O’Neil, Subdeacon John Cummings, James Cummings, Emrys Tennessen, Matthew Veith, Aaron Holloway, Blake Davenport, and Dmitri Medrick.
The newly-elected officers of the Ukrainian Orthodox League of the USA are:
President: Karen Ferraro (Philadelphia, PA; re-elected)
First Vice President: Oleh Bilynsky (Philadelphia, PA; re-elected)
Second Vice President: Anna Anderson (Youngstown, OH)
Treasurer: Daria Pishko-Komichak (Maplewood, NJ; re-elected)
Financial Secretary: Joe Goodge (Sharon, PA)
Corresponding Secretary: PM Laryssa Charest (Carnegie, PA)
Recording Secretary: Christine Mills (Carnegie, PA)
Auditor: John Stasko (Carnegie, PA)
President: Madeline Zetick (Philadelphia, PA)
Vice President: Natalie Hrytsay (Philadelphia, PA)
Treasurer: Hrystyna Petrylo (Pittsburgh, PA)
Financial Secretary: Rachel Harendza (Scranton, PA)
Secretary: Kateryna Petrylo (Pittsburgh, PA)
The convention was closed with the Prayer in Time of Coronavirus by His Eminence Archbishop Daniel, for all those suffering, those who have reposed, and for those in our communities on the front lines caring for the sick.
The 74th Annual UOL Convention is planned for July 21-25, 2021 in the Philadelphia area.