Congregation of the UGCC
Salesians of Don Bosco (abbreviated: SDB)
The Salesian Congregation includes both male and female communities. It was founded in 1859 by St. John Bosco in Turin (Northern Italy). The founder decided that French Saint Francis de Sales (1567-1622) will be the patron of the new Congregation, who was noted for his special pastoral wisdom and kindness in his ministry. The Salesians see their vocation by working with adolescents and young adults, trying to take care of the spiritual and moral upbringing of the younger generation, as well as to form their Christian identity.
In Western Ukraine (Halychyna), the Salesians were present far back, as a Roman Catholic Congregation (since 1890). However, over time, the idea of creating a Ukrainian Greek Catholic branch of the Salesians came true. This happened in 1930 on the initiative of Metropolitan Andrey Sheptytsky and with the support of Pope Pius XI.
Currently, the Salesian Greek Catholic communities are located in the cities of Lviv and Kyiv, as well as in the village of Novosilky near Lviv. In addition, there are 3 active Salesian communities in Ukraine in the Roman Catholic Church. They are located in Odesa, Korostyshiv and Peremyshliany.
Basilian Order of St. Josaphat (abbreviated: OSBM)
Basilians belong to one of the oldest and most numerous monastic community in the Greek Catholic Church. There are also many communities of Basilian Sisters. Those nuns dedicate their lives and to the people in need.
During its existence, the Basilians underwent several reforms: first in the early 17th century, then in 1882. In 1931, their official name was updated. Now is sounds as „Basilian Order of St. Josaphat”.
The main purpose of the life and activity of the Basilians is the proclamation of God’s Word through Evangelistic Missions, days of Spiritual Renewal and Parish Retreats. Also Basilians are engaged in publishing activity and scientific work.
Basilians are monks who develop and operate only in the Greek Catholic Church, but their activities concern not only the territory of Ukraine. The members of Basilian Order are present in many European countries. They operate in monasteries and parishes in Brazil, in the United States of America, in Canada etc. In addition, many members of the Basilian Order of St. Josaphat belong to other Eastern (Greek Catholic) Particular Churches: Romanian, Hungarian, Slovak and Greek Catholic Eparchy of Mukachevo.
Studite Brethren (abbreviated: MSU)
These monks are also called Studites, because they live according to the written instructions (rules) of Theodore the Studite, a monk saint who became a saint and lived in the 5th century and was a founded a monastery in the capital city of Constantinople called «Studion». Besides male religious society of Studite, there are also monasteries of the Studite Sisters. They lead a modest and ascetic lifestyle, concentrating on inner prayer and awareness about God’s presence.
Even in the times of Kievan Rus, the monks who lived in the Pechersk Monastery in Kyiv-lived according to the rules of Theodore the Studite. This fact means that the roots of Studites as consecrated persons come from the early times of Christianity and beginnings of Ukrainian State – Kyivan Rus’. Hence, the Studites were in touch the ancient tradition of the Ukrainian Church. However, since many years, the lifestyle of Studites and their strict monastic discipline was forgotten in the Greek Catholic Church.
At the end of the 19th century, a movement for restoration of the ancient monastic traditions of strict monastic lifestyle was very strong in the Greek Catholic Church in Western Ukraine. It was about the restoration of ancient monasteries as well as traditional Studite lifestyle and old Eastern traditions. In 1898, the first community of Studites was founded in the location near Sokal. It was arranged by the Metropolitan Andrey Sheptytsky, as well as with help of his brother Clement, who decided to join the Studites.
Nowadays, in modern Ukraine, the Studites live and do their ministry in 10 monasteries. The Studite Sisters have active communities in several monasteries in Lviv city and in Ternopil region.
Congregation of the Most Holy Redeemer (abbreviated: CSsR)
Members of this monastic community are also called Redemptorists. The name comes from the word «Redemptor», which translated from Latin, reads “Redeemer”. The term refers to the person of Jesus Christ, who came into this world to redeem people from sin, death and hell. The founder of the Redemptorists was the Italian priest Alfonso Maria de Liguori, who decided to establish a community in the town of Scala near Naples for the purpose of active pastoral ministry among the poor and abandoned people.
Roman Catholic Redemptorists started their pastoral service in Western Ukraine at the end of the 19th century. However, in the Greek Catholic Church, the members of the Congregation of the Most Holy Redeemer from Belgium started their ministry among Ukrainian emigrants in Canada. It happened in 1906 and in 1913 they arrived to Halychyna for doing their ministry. During the Soviet period, several Redemptorists were ordained bishops and actively joined the leadership of the Greek Catholic Church, which was persecuted in the USSR. Some of them were arrested or tortured in Soviet prisons.
In 1997, was founded the first monastery of Redemptorist Sisters in Ukraine. Their official name is: Missionary Sisters of the Most Holy Redeemer. At that time Redemptorist Sisters moved from Germany to Ukraine and established new young community in Lviv. They started missionary activity in Ukraine, as well as strengthened the pastoral work of Redemptorist Fathers and Brothers.
Today, Redemptorist monasteries and parishes are located in Lviv, Ternopil, Kamianets-Podils’kyi, Kovel, Hnizdychiv, Novoyavorivsk and Kovel. The Redemptorist Sisters live and life and work in Lviv, Kamianets-Podilskyi and Chernihiv.