"Let books be your dining table, / And you shall be full of delights. / Let them be your
And you shall sleep restful nights" (St. Ephraim the Syrian).

Wednesday, February 5, 2020

Metropolitan Andrey Sheptytsky and the Nazis

It has been said for years that one of the factors holding up the canonization of Metropolitan Andrey Sheptytsky is some concern around what he may have said with regard to the German invaders of 1941. This new study, by a young historian Andriy Mykhaleyko, is therefore going to be invaluable in airing and analyzing these claims once and for all: Metropolit Andrey Graf Sheptytskyj und das NS-Regime: Zwischen christlichem Ideal und politischer Realität (Brill, 2020).

Mykhaleyko's book is published by Brill as the first volume in their new series, Eastern Church Identities. About that series Brill tells us this:
This new series focuses on the interplay between theological thinking and cultural self-understanding of the Oriental-Orthodox, the Byzantine and the Uniate branches of the Eastern Churches worldwide. The series studies the Eastern Churches' various roles within their mainfold contexts, i.e. either as actors within the transformation-processes in Eastern Europe or as minorities both in the Middle East and in the north American diaspora. By fully acknowledging the role of ritual and hagiography for the ecclesial community-building and the theology of the Eastern Churches the series opens up new approaches to an often-neglected dimension of global Christianity. The series accepts contributions in English, German and French. Each incoming manuscript is evaluated in a peer-reviewing-process conducted by renowned specialists from the editorial and the advisory boards.
And about the book itself the publisher tells us this:
Metropolit Andrey Sheptytskyj war der einflussreichste Repräsentant der Ukrainischen Griechisch-Katholischen Kirche im 20. Jahrhundert. Sein letzter Lebensabschnitt unter dem NS-Regime wird bis heute sehr gegensätzlich bewertet und kontrovers diskutiert.
Während die sowjetische Geschichtsschreibung Sheptytskyj als Kollaborateur des NS-Regimes, Feind des Kommunismus und Agenten des Vatikans verurteilte, verehrt die griechisch-katholische Kirche ihn als nationale Symbolfigur, als »neuen Moses«, dessen Heiligsprechung sie betreibt. Mykhaleyko legt einen Beitrag zur Neubewertung Sheptytskyjs vor: Durch die Kontextualisierung seiner Biographie im Zeitalter der Totalitarismen während der ersten Hälfte des 20. Jahrhunderts korrigiert die Studie die historischen Narrative, dekonstruiert die ideologischen Porträts Sheptytskyjs und entmythologisiert das ambivalente Verhältnis Sheptytskyjs zum NS-Regime.

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