Summaries and Reports of the Archeparchial Sobors (2019-2021)
We bring to your attention a document crucial to understand the structure of the Archeparchial Plan published on our webpage. These are Summaries and Reports of the Archeparchial Sobors, which took place over two years (2019-2021). Over a hundred participants discussed the challenges and future vision of the Archeparchy during live and online meetings. Thoughts, proposals, and ideas expressed at the Sobors were included in the framework document of the Synodal Group of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church “2030 Pastoral Development Strategy” and will create the basis for the Philadelphia Archeparchial Plan. This project will last several years. Its preparatory phase began in May 2021 and will last until December 2022.
This document contains the following:
SESSION 1 (October 28, 2019): Thematic Analysis
This joint session was held at Immaculate Conception Cathedral and was attended by 194 delegates. Building on the theme of “communion-unity” proposed for the Patriarchal Sobor in 2020, the delegates were asked to reflect on positive and negative experiences of communion-unity at the parish and archeparchial levels, as well as to propose ways of strengthening communion-unity at these levels.
SESSION 2 (December 7, 2019): Laity Gifts, Summary of Table Reports
This joint session was held at St. Michael the Archangel’s parish in Jenkintown, PA, and was attended by 171 delegates. The focus of the session was on the role of the laity in reference to the first three elements of the Vibrant Parish program of the UGCC: Word of God-Catechesis, Liturgy and Prayer, Serving one’s neighbor (Diakonia). The delegates were asked to reflect on: “What Gifts can the laity offer to address the needs and promote the mission of the archeparchy?” in reference to the three elements.
SESSION 2 (December 7, 2019): SUGGESTION BOX
Also, delegates were given an opportunity to write down their proposals and submit them anonymously in a SUGGESTION BOX prepared for this purpose. In total, 198 suggestions were received from 68 individuals.
SESSION 3 (November-December 2020): PRIORITIZED RESOLUTIONS / COVID-19 BREAKOUT REPORT, p. 24
In the year that followed the December 2019 session, in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic the Archeparchy decided to summarize the key proposals of the first two sessions in the form of resolutions, and present them to the delegates for prioritization. As it was not possible to hold a joint session, the decision was made to hold four regional sessions, using ZOOM as a meeting platform. These regional sessions also included breakout sessions on the positive and negative impact of the pandemic, with proposals on moving forward based on the lessons learned.
SESSION 4 (January 23, 2021): Summary ZOOM Session Report, p. 33
In this joint ZOOM session, the delegates were divided according to deanery and asked to: 1) Express their hopes and expectations regarding the Archeparchial Pastoral Council, 2) Propose two candidates from each deanery to form an Archeparchial Pastoral Council planning committee.
Submitted by: V. Rev. Andrew T. Onuferko, S.Th.D. Sobor Secretary