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Ukrainian Catholic Eparchy of New Westminster 2013 Christmas Candle Initiative

Dana Koren Lupynis (Vancouver)

The 2nd annual “Christmas Candle” or “Різдвяна свічка” campaign, set out by the Ukrainian Catholic Eparchy (Diocese) of New Westminster raised $9,214 for disadvantaged, disabled and orphaned children in Ukraine. The appeal provided an opportunity to encourage the children and laity of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church of Canada and the United States Pacific Northwest to become more aware and connected with their cultural and spiritual homeland and take part in this global fundraising program, sponsored by Caritas Ukraine.

Caritas President, Andrij Waskowycz’s visit with Bishop Ken Nowakowski, Eparcial Chancellor Fr. Yuriy Vyshnevskyy, Eparchial program coordinator Dana Koren Lupynis and Holy Eucharist Ukrainian Heritage School teachers

Caritas Ukraine is the official charitable organization of the Ukrainian Catholic Church and is endorsed by His Beatitude Sviatoslav Shevchuk.  The organization works throughout Ukraine to provide the basic necessities to the needy, disadvantaged, disabled and orphaned children.

Dana Koren Lupynis, Eparchial Caritas project coordinator, along with the help of Susan Lazaruk, Jennifer Sawka and her two daughters Natalia and Emelia, led the sales of candles at Protection of the Blessed Virgin Mary Ukrainian Catholic Church in Vancouver, BC

The inaugural campaign, in 2012, was limited to Vancouver’s Lower Mainland parishes and was successful in raising over $2,500.  Through media reports and word of mouth, interest in the Christmas Candle project grew and, this year the Eparchy expanded its reach to all of the Ukrainian Catholic Parishes in British Columbia; including Vancouver, New Westminster, Surrey, Richmond, Kelowna, Vernon, Kamloops, Penticton, Grinrod, Prince George and Vancouver Island.

Fr. Andrii Chornenkyi with volunteer Darka Morin and her children Natalie, Matthew and Nathan at Exaltation of the Holy Cross Parish in Surrey, BC

Fr. Andrezj Wasylinko with his children supporting the appeal from his parishes: St Josephat’s Ukrainian Catholic Church in Vernon, BC and Sts. Peter and Paul Parish in Grinrod, BC

In addition, with the cause of helping Ukrainian children transcending Provincial and International boarders, the project drew the interest  of the Ukrainian Catholic parish in Seattle, WA, USA as well as several parishes in the Canadian cities of Ottawa and Edmonton.  The contribution by all the parishes and volunteers was enormous and played an integral role in this year’s success.

The Ukrainian Catholic Eparchy of New Westminster, Most Rev Ken Nowakowski, Bishop of New Westminster, along with Eparchial Chancellor Fr. Yuriy Vyshnevskyy and the coordinator Dana Koren Lupynis want to thank all the volunteers and supporters for helping in the mission to provide assistance to the disadvantaged children in Ukraine, as well as supporting the enrichment of diakonia – charity/self giving.

For more information or if you or your parish would like to volunteer, take part or make a donations for the 2014 campaign, please contact the coordinator of this appeal, Dana Koren Lupynis at

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