Metropolitan-Archbishop

Metropolitan-Archbishop of Philadelphia of the Ukrainian Catholic Church

Head, Department of External Church Relations, Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church

President, Ukrainian Catholic University, Lviv

Chairman, USCCB Committee on Domestic Justice and Human Development 

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 at Syracuse University in 1980 and studied in Rome, in the circle of Patriarch Josyf Slipyj. He received a degree in theology (STB) from the Pontifical Urban University in 1983. He returned to the US to pursue a doctorate in Slavic and Byzantine Cultural and Ecclesiastical History at Harvard University, defended in 1992. At Harvard, he was a student of Henri Nouwen who introduced him to the world of L’Arche. In 1995, he earned a licentiate in Eastern Church studies at the Pontifical Oriental Institute. 

In 1992, Gudziak 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 with a mandate to develop a Catholic university. From 1995 until 2000, he served as Vice-Rector of the Lviv Theological Academy, then as its Rector from 2000 to 2002. In that year, Gudziak became Rector of the Ukrainian Catholic University (established on the basis of the Academy). In 2013, he was named its President.

Borys Gudziak was ordained a priest on November 26, 1998. On August 26, 2012, he was ordained a Bishop of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church (UGCC) serving France, Belgium, the Netherlands, Luxemburg, and Switzerland. Since 2012, he has been a member of the UGCC Permanent Synod. He has been the head of the Department of External Church Relations of the UGCC since 2014. Archbishop Gudziak was responsible for the Synodal Group which prepared the framework for the UGCC 2030 pastoral plan.

In 2014, Bishop Gudziak launched a synodal process in the Paris Eparchy. As a result, the number of priests almost tripled and parishes doubled. The laity was engaged in all aspects of the life of the Eparchy. A new financial model for the eparchy’s sustainability and transparency was elaborated.

Bishop Gudziak was involved with the 2013-2014 Maidan movement for human dignity and appeared regularly in global media outlets providing expert commentary.

On February 18, 2019, Bishop Gudziak was appointed Metropolitan and Archbishop of Philadelphia for Ukrainian Catholics in the United States of America. On June 4, 2019, Metropolitan Archbishop Gudziak was enthroned as the leader of the Ukrainian Catholic Archeparchy of Philadelphia at the Ukrainian Catholic Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception in Philadelphia. That year, Pope Francis named him a member of the Congregation (Dicastery) for the Oriental Churches.

Archbishop Gudziak 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). In 2016 he was awarded the Jan Nowak-Jeziorański Award in Wroclaw, Poland, in recognition of 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 the Vasyl Stus literary award from the Ukrainian chapter of PEN International. In 2019 he received the Notre Dame Award from the University of Notre Dame. In 2021 Metropolitan Borys Gudziak received an Honorary Doctorate from Saint Charles Borromeo Seminary, and Pope Francis named him a member of the Dicastery for Communication. In 2022, the Archbishop obtained Honorary Doctorates from the Catholic University of America and the University of Notre Dame.  In the fall of that year, he started his term as chairman of the Committee on Domestic Justice and Human Development of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops. In February 2023, he received the Catholic Faith Network Award of Excellence. In May 2023, Archbishop Borys received honorary doctorates from three Catholic institutions of higher education – Ave Maria School of Law, the University of San Francisco, and Seton Hall University. 

He travels globally with lectures and talks on theology, history, spirituality, education, society, and the current war and challenges in Ukraine.

Archbishop Gudziak is the author of several scholarly works, especially on Church history, among them Crisis and Reform: The Kyivan Metropolitanate, the Patriarchate of Constantinople, and the Genesis of the Union of Brest (Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 1998; Ukrainian translation, 2000; Polish translation, 2008), as well as numerous articles in European and North American academic journals. He has also published hundreds of videos, articles, and interviews in popular media outlets, position papers on academic curricula and educational reform, and introductions to scholarly and spiritual publications. He speaks English, Ukrainian, Italian, Polish, French, Russian, and German.

He continues to be an active member of “Plast” Ukrainian Scouting Organization and heads its supervisory board in Ukraine. Archbishop Gudziak is an honorary citizen of Lviv. He loves to play basketball, swim, and ski.

The Coat of Arms of Archbishop and Metropolitan Borys Gudziak

The coat uses a laconic modern style reflecting the semiotics of a contemporary logo.

The Trinitarian, Christocentric, Eucharistic, and Old-Kyivan accents are clearly discernible. The coat of arms is not in the form of a militaristic shield but of a chalice as a symbol of the Paschal bloodless sacrifice. 

The trident, the main element, is a sign of St. Volodymyr the Great's acceptance in 988 of the faith in the Triune God and symbolizes the fullness of Divinity. Its crimson color represents the sacrifice of Christ, the martyrs, and the wine of the Eucharist. Gold is the color of Divinity and of bread. The Son of God becomes a man and sheds his blood, accepting death on the cross to witness in this world God's eternal love and glory.  

The cross in the center symbolizes the Savior's Easter victory. Through the Cross – to the Resurrection. This devotion to Christ and the Cross is shown by the princes and passion-bearers Sts. Borys and Hlib, sons of Volodymyr, representatives of the first generation of the baptism of Rus'-Ukraine, and the first saints canonized on Kyivan land. Their bowed heads – vivid fraternal benevolence - exemplify an interpersonal relationship of harmony, peace, and joy, reflecting the interpersonal love in the Holy Trinity. 

The motto Ευχαριστώ ("thank you" in Greek) stands for both the Eucharistic sacrifice and gratitude for the grace and generosity of God.



Metropolitan

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