CHARLOTTE — People young and old welcomed Bishop Bohdan Danylo, head of the Ukrainian Catholic Eparchy of St. Josaphat in Parma, Ohio, to St. Basil the Great Eastern Catholic Parish, for a pastoral visit April 17-19.

In his homily during the Divine Liturgy (Mass) offered April 18, Bishop Bohdan encouraged people to proclaim the resurrected Christ especially in response to the darkness, despair and uncertainty caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

One year later, the pandemic may be “a little bit behind us” but many people still suffer, he said. Christians are called to be messengers of the Good News, he said.

“We know what darkness is, we know what uncertainty is, we know what it means to be afraid,” yet just as Jesus’ disciples did when they encountered the risen Lord, we should proclaim as the Paschal troparion states: “Christ is risen from the dead, trampling down death by death, and on those in the tombs bestowing life!”

The bishop entreated, “Preach the same news that the apostles preached to those that they encountered… Even with more joy, proclaim the Good News about the risen Christ to whoever God is calling us to proclaim: our families, our neighbors, our friends at work.”

The Ukrainian Catholic Church is one of 23 autonomous Eastern (Byzantine) rite churches in communion with the pope.

The growing St. Basil Parish, which falls under the jurisdiction of Bishop Bohdan, worships at St. Thomas Aquinas Church in Charlotte.

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— Patricia L. Guilfoyle | Catholic News Herald