Head Of World American Patriarchate Departed
A patriarch of the non-canonical World American Patriarchate Yury (Emigidiusz Ryzy) departed, Nasha Niva reports.
He was born in 1933 in Hlubokaye region in a Catholic family. Since 1946 he lived in Poland, since 1976 in the US, wher he soon headed World American Patriarchate (WAP) founded by his brother Ladzsilaw.
WAP was created as a part of American Catholic Orthodox Church (ACOC) which originated in the Western Rite vicariate of Antiochian Orthodox Archbishopry in America. It is owrth noticing that Ladzislaw Ryzy tried to become a Catholic priest, later he headed the Old Catholic movement and even vested himself with a function of an Apostolic visitator to Catholic Belarusians in 1960, in 1965 he took holy orders in ACOC (since 1967 he became an archbishop).
In 1972, when Ladzislaw Ryzy was excommunicated from ACOC, he had appointed 17 independent patriarchs. Later, on the basis of WAP, he created Belarusian Orthodox National Church and Orthodox Catholic Autocephalous Curch of the USA. In 1978 Ladzislaw Ryzy died and WAP was headed by Adam Bilecki succeded by Ladzislaw’s brother Emigidiusz.
Since 1993 Patriarch Yury had visited Belarus 10 times. By his initiative and with his direct participation Belarusian People Autocephalous Orthodox Church. Thus, in 1994 services began in Minsk parish of St. Euphrosine of Polatsk, in 1995 Bishop Pyotr Hushcha was ordained in Minsk and the first issue of the “Holas tsarkvy Belaruskay” bulletin was published, a chapel was built for the parish of Cyrill of Turau in Slonim, a construction of a church in Pahranichny village started. In 2002 the parish of St. Yury in Svhomyslitsa village near Minsk was founded. Today all they are defunct, except the parish of St. Euphrosine of Polatsk which joined Belarusian Autocephalous Orthodox Church with its priest Leania Akalovich. In 1998 Bishop Piotr Hushcha was put on trial for corruption of minors and now is avoiding the liability abroad.
In 2003 Emigidiusz Ryzy wrote and published a book of memoirs called “Moy kryzh” (My cross), his short tales were published in the “Belarus” annual.
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