An earnest priest-confessor of the faith, a great national leader and organizer, the member of the Parliamentary Representation and one of the greatest patriots of Galychyna.
Blessed Mykhailo Hanushevskyi was born on December 5, 1880 in the
seminary student he organized a student cooperative society and was its director
and books registrar. At that time the cooperative life in
He took an
active part in the competition of Ukrainian students as a representative of the
However, he burned with a great desire to "go to the masses" and having resigned his position of a chaplain he began working in Verbylivtsi village (near Rogatyn), later in Letsivtsi village (near Pereginsk) and then in Voloske village (near Bolekhiv). In those villages he organized consumers` and credit cooperative societies: "Power", "Unity" and "Love", and in Bolekhiv – a cooperative society "Hope". He also organized reading rooms of “Prosvita” and communities of sobriety for parishes.
In 1911 Father Hanushevskyi led the parish in Hutsulia in Nadvirnyanskyi district. It was really a parish district with headquarters in Mikulychyn; it consisted of the villages Tatariv, Yamna and Polyanytsya Popovychivska. In the latter village Father Hanushevskyi built a style Hutsulian church with the altar and iconostasis of the cedar wood. In 1913 he moved to the parishes in Dora and Yaremche (the same district in the mountains), where he remained until 1927 as a Nadvirna Dean and organizer of consumer and credit cooperative societies “Garasd” (OK). He also organized the society “Prosvita” and bought books for its reading room, organized the sport society “Lug” (Meadow), The Communities of Sobriety and others.
At the beginning of the 1st World War Father Hanushevskyi received – the Gold Cross of Merit with a Crown - the highest distinction of Emperor Franz Joseph I. Only six persons in Galychyna, who were not soldiers, received this distinction for the public, cultural and educational activities. Soon the villages, where Father Hanushevskyi worked, came around. People of the region appreciated the hard work of Father Hanushevskyi, loved and respected him for it.
In 1919 the Romanian troops occupied Dora village. Carrying the authority of the priest, Father Hanushevskyi often defended his parishioners from Romanian military authorities and forced the soldiers to stop their unfair actions. After the lands had been occupied by the Poles, Father Hanushevskyi was jailed for his patriotic activities. In 1921 he was arrested for the second time by the Poles before the elections to the Sejm, because the Ukrainians of Galychyna boycotted those elections. At that time Father Hanushevskyi served his time in Stanislaviv prison for a few weeks, being deprived of contact with his parish and leading people of Hutsulia. The Polish occupation lasted for many years. Those were bitter times for the Ukrainian people. However Father Hanushevskyi didn’t give up and continued organizing different cooperative societies, reading rooms of “Prosvita” etc. At the same time he took on new workers, organized courses for cooperative societies, bibliology courses, new reading rooms etc.
Since 1927 Father Hanushevskyi has worked in Stanislaviv. He became the Chairman of the Supervisiory Board of the District Cooperative Union, of the Supervisiory Board of the department Maslosoyuz (Butter Department) and of the district Society “Renascence”. He was a member of the Directorate of Co-operative Bank, the chief controller of the Ukrainian County Council, the guardian of the Plast organization, Sokil (the Falcon). Father Hanushevskyi also established the credit and consumer cooperative society, a reading room of Prosvita in the village. For his earnest pastoral work he was appointed the Advisor and Reviewer of the Episcopal Consistory.
In 1928 Father Hanushevskyi was elected as the Ambassador of the Ukrainian People's Democratic Union at the Warsaw Seym. During this time he worked in a slightly different direction. He headed the commission for assistance to military disabled soldiers, widows and orphans; he fought for the adequate salaries to Ukrainians from the Polish government and was also involved in school, cooperative and other public affairs. He had the happiness to seek for success.
At the beginning of World War II Father Hanushevskyi and his family visited the Lemko region, where at the end of 1939 he and other cooperative leaders reorganized the Lemko Cooperative Union. In the fall of 1941 he returned to the parish in Ugornyky village, where he continued his favorite work.
Before the end of the Second World War Father Hanushevskyi did not take the permission of his Bishop Grygoriy to go abroad with his children. His response was resolute: ‘I want to stay with my people. If I have to die for it, then this is probably God's will.’ His wife and two daughters decided to share the fate and the trouble of their father. The years passed. They were difficult, full of bitter experiences and they steeled the faith and love of Father Hanushevskyi to God and his people. Despite of all the events Father Hanushevskyi stayed true to the Ukrainian Catholic Church to his last breath.
unbearable anxiety during the Siberian exile, sufferings of his family,
thousands of miles from the native border nor seductive promises of freedom and
profitable life at the cost of betrayal of the Christian faith dispirited him.
Seven years of exile in northeast
1960 was a happy jubilee of the 55th anniversary of Father Hanushevskyi`s
Ordination and marriage and his 80 years. His relatives and former parishioners
celebrated this anniversary, although modestly, but grandly and worthy.
However, severe illness, which began in the early years of his staying in
He lay in
catafalque with a small icon of Saint Josaphat, who was a martyr-witness of the
Address: s. Uhornyky, Povstantsiv str.
date: Monday, 30 November -0001