Slovak Greek Catholic Church

The Slovak Greek Catholic Church (Slovak: Gréckokatolícka cirkev na Slovensku, "Greek-Catholic Church in Slovakia"), or Slovak Byzantine Catholic Church, is a Metropolitan sui iuris Eastern particular Church in full union with the Catholic Church. Its liturgical rite is the Byzantine Rite. L'Osservatore Romano of January 31, 2008 reported that, in Slovakia alone, it had some 350,000 faithful, 374 priests and 254 parishes. In addition, the 2012 Annuario Pontificio gave its Canadian Eparchy of Saints Cyril and Methodius of Toronto as having 2,000 faithful, 4 priests and 5 parishes.[2] The Slovak Greek Catholic Church is in full communion with the Holy See.

Slovak Greek Catholic Church
ClassificationEastern Catholic
PrimateMetropolitan Ján Babjak
AssociationsCongregation for the Oriental Churches
RegionSlovakia, with communities in Canada
LiturgyByzantine Rite
HeadquartersPrešov, Slovakia
Other name(s)Slovak Byzantine Catholic Church


Since the Union of Uzhhorod in 1646 was unanimously accepted on the territory that includes present day eastern Slovakia, the history of the Slovak Greek Catholic Church was for centuries intertwined with that of the Ruthenian Greek Catholic Church. At the end of World War I, most Greek Catholic Ruthenians and Slovaks were included within the territory of Czechoslovakia, including two eparchies, Prešov and Mukačevo. The eparchy of Prešov, created on September 22, 1818, was removed in 1937 from the jurisdiction of the Hungarian primate and subjected directly to the Holy See, while the 21 parishes of the eparchy of Prešov that were in Hungary were formed into the new exarchate of Miskolc.

After World War II, the eparchy of Mukačevo in Transcarpathia was annexed by the Soviet Union, thus the eparchy of Prešov included all the Greek Catholics that remained in Czechoslovakia. After communists seized the country in April 1950, a "synod" was convoked at Prešov, at which five priests and a number of laymen signed a document declaring that the union with Rome was disbanded and asking to be received into the jurisdiction of the Moscow Patriarchate, later the Orthodox Church of Czechoslovakia. Greek Catholic bishop Blessed Pavel Petro Gojdič of Prešov along with his auxiliary, Blessed Basil Hopko, were imprisoned and bishop Gojdič died in prison in 1960.

During the Prague Spring in 1968, the former Greek Catholic parishes were allowed to restore communion with Rome. Of the 292 parishes involved, 205 voted in favor. This was one of the few reforms by Dubček that survived the Soviet invasion the same year. However, most of their church buildings remained in the hands of Orthodox Church.

After communism was overthrown in the 1989 Velvet Revolution, most of the Church property was returned to the Slovak Greek Catholic Church by 1993, the year after the dissolution of Czechoslovakia into the Czech Republic and Slovakia. For Greek Catholics in the Czech Republic, a separate Apostolic Vicariate was created, elevated in 1996 to an exarchate thus forming the Apostolic Exarchate in the Czech Republic (now considered part of Ruthenian Catholic Church); the 2007 Annuario Pontificio indicated that it had by then grown to having 177,704 faithful, 37 priests and 25 parishes.

In Slovakia itself, Pope John Paul II created an Apostolic Exarchate of Košice in 1997. Pope Benedict XVI raised this to the level of an Eparchy on January 30, 2008 and at the same time erected the new Byzantine-rite Eparchy of Bratislava. He also raised Prešov to the level of a metropolitan see, constituting the Slovak Greek Catholic Church as a sui iuris metropolitan Church.





In the United States, the Slovak Greek Catholics are not distinguished from the Ruthenians. Nonetheless, they have an eparchy in Canada, the Eparchy of Saints Cyril and Methodius of Toronto.


  1. ^
  2. ^ Annuario Pontificio 2012 (Libreria Editrice Vaticana 2012 ISBN 978-88-209-8722-0). p. 630


External links

Coordinates: 48°59′39″N 21°14′36″E / 48.9942°N 21.2432°E

Basil Hopko

Basil or Vasiľ Hopko (April 24, 1904, Hrabské — July 23, 1976) was an eparch (bishop) of the Slovak Greek Catholic Church. He was beatified by Pope John Paul II for his martyrdom under Communist occupation.

Cathedral of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross, Bratislava

The Church of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross (Slovak: Chrám Povýšenia vznešeného a životodarného kríža) is a cathedral in Bratislava, Slovakia. It was built in the year 1860 at the edge of St. Andrew's cemetery (Ondrejský cintorín). Since 1972, the church belongs to Greek Catholic Church. It is the cathedral church of the Eparchy of Bratislava since 2008.

Cathedral of the Nativity of the Mother of God (Košice)

The Greek Catholic Cathedral Church of Virgin Mary's Birth (Slovak: Gréckokatolícky katedrálny chrám Narodenia presvätej Bohorodičky) is located at Moyzesova Street in the historic centre of Košice, Slovakia. It is the cathedral of the Eparchy of Košice.

Greek Catholics started to settle in Košice in the 17th century. As late as 1852 their bishop established a chapel in Košice. Till then, the divine services were served in the Franciscan Church, and rarely at the Premonstrates or in St. Michael Chapel.

In 1880, the community were able to buy grounds near the chapel and to build the church in the years 1882-1898.

In the Communist era of former Czechoslovakia, the church was given to the Orthodox Church after the banning of the Greek Catholic (Byzantine Catholic) Church. After 1990, it was returned to the Greek Catholics and the church was restored and repaired to its current condition.

Cathedral of the Transfiguration (Markham)

The Cathedral of the Transfiguration is a Catholic Byzantine rite house of worship named in honour of the Transfiguration of Our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. The Cathedral, in the Canadian city of Markham just north of Toronto, is the centrepiece of the 225-acre Cathedraltown, an unincorporated town of about 3,000 residents that began development in 2004.

Catholic Church in Slovakia

The Catholic Church in Slovakia is part of the worldwide Catholic Church, under the spiritual leadership of the Pope in Rome.

Around 62% of the total population is Latin Catholic and another 3.8% is Greek Catholic. The country is divided into 8 dioceses including 3 archdioceses, and there is also a separate jurisdiction for those of the Byzantine Rite, see Slovak Greek Catholic Church.

Taking the percentage of membership in the Catholic Church as an indicator, Slovakia is the fourth most Catholic Slavic country, after Poland, Croatia and Slovenia.

Church of Saint-Nicolas of Bodružal

Church of Saint-Nicolas of Bodružal is a Greek-catholic church situated in the village of Bodružal.

Church of Saint Michael the Archangel of Ladomirová

Church of Saint Michael the Archangel of Ladomirová is a Greek-catholic church situated in the village of Ladomirová.

Cyril Vasiľ

Archbishop Cyril Vasiľ, S.J., (born 10 April 1965) is a Slovak Jesuit priest, professor and Rector of the Pontifical Oriental Institute. He was appointed Secretary of the Congregation for the Oriental Churches (7 May 2009) and consecrated bishop of the (titular) see of Ptolemais in Libya (14 June 2009).Vasiľ was born in Košice, Slovakia. From 1982 to 1987 he attended the Faculty of Theology of Cyril and Methodius in Bratislava. He was ordained priest for the Slovak Greek Catholic Church in 1987. In 1989 he obtained the licentiate in canon law at the Pontifical Oriental Institute in Rome.

On 15 October 1990 he entered the Society of Jesus and in 2001 made his solemn profession. In 1994 he obtained a doctorate in Eastern Canon Law at the Pontifical Oriental Institute.In 2002 he was elected Dean of the Faculty of Eastern Canon Law at the Pontifical Oriental Institute and pro-rector, and in May 2007 rector, the first member of the Slovak Greek Catholic Church to hold that post.

He was a Consultor of the Congregation for the Oriental Churches, the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, and the Pontifical Council for the Pastoral Care of Migrants and Itinerants. He was appointed an expert to the assembly of the General Assembly of the Synod of Bishops on the Eucharist that was held in 2005. He was also a professor in the Pontifical Gregorian University in Rome, the Theological Faculty of the University of Bratislava and the University of Trnava. In 2003 he was appointed Spiritual Director of the Union Internationale des Guides et Scouts d′Europe. He served as Spiritual Director of this traditional faith-based Scouting organization until 2007.In addition to Slovak, he knows Latin, Italian, English, Russian, Ukrainian, French, German, Polish, Spanish, Greek and Old Church Slavonic.

He is the author of numerous books and articles and has worked with Vatican Radio.On 7 May 2009, Pope Benedict XVI appointed him titular Archbishop of Ptolemais in Libya and Secretary of the Congregation for the Oriental Churches, a department of the Roman Curia headed by Cardinal Leonardo Sandri. He succeeded Antonio Maria Vegliò, who on 28 February 2009 had become President of the Pontifical Council for the Pastoral Care of Migrants and Itinerants.On 21 January 2010 he was appointed as a consultor to the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity in addition to his duties at the Congregation for the Oriental Churches.

Greek Catholic Church

The Greek Catholic Church refers to a number of Eastern Catholic Churches following the Byzantine (Greek) liturgy, considered collectively or individually.

The terms Greek Catholic, Greek-Catholic, Greek Catholic church and Greek-Catholic Church may refer to:

Individually, any 14 of the 23 Eastern Catholic Churches which use the Byzantine rite, a.k.a. Greek Rite:

the Albanian Greek Catholic Church

the Belarusian Greek Catholic Church

the Bulgarian Greek Catholic Church

the Greek Catholic Church of Croatia and Serbia

the Greek Byzantine Catholic Church, in Greece and Turkey

the Hungarian Greek Catholic Church

the Italo-Albanian Catholic Church

the Macedonian Greek Catholic Church

the Melkite Greek Catholic Church

the Romanian Greek Catholic Church (officially the Romanian Church United with Rome, Greek-Catholic)

the Russian Greek Catholic Church

the Ruthenian Greek Catholic Church

the Slovak Greek Catholic Church

the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church

Any other group of Eastern Catholics following the Byzantine rite:

the Georgian Byzantine-Rite Catholics

an Ordinariate for Eastern Catholic faithful without proper ordinary, in 6 countries

The Catholic Church in Greece, a Roman Catholic hierarchy following the Latin rite in the country of Greece

Greek Catholic Eparchy of Mukachevo

The Greek Catholic Eparchy of Mukachevo is an eparchy (diocese) associated with the Ruthenian Greek Catholic Church under an unidentified status and territory located in the west of Ukraine, roughly equivalent with Zakarpatska Oblast. The eparchy was created by the Pope Clement XIV in 1771.

The eparchy is in full communion with the Roman Catholic Church. Its parishes observe the Byzantine Rite which is also celebrated by the majority of Orthodox Christians, and as provided for in the original terms of the Union of Uzhhorod.

The eparchy is a mother eparchy of at least three modern metropoles, i.e., the Slovak Greek Catholic Church, the Romanian Greek Catholic Church, and the Hungarian Greek Catholic Church, as well as the Ruthenian Greek Catholic Church in the United States.

Ján Hirka

The Most Reverend Ján Hirka (16 November 1923 – 10 April 2014) was a bishop of the Slovak Greek Catholic Church.

List of cathedrals in Slovakia

This is the list of cathedrals and co-cathedrals in Slovakia sorted by denomination.


Prostopinije (meaning Plain Chant in Rusyn) is a type of monodic church chant, closely related to Znamenny Chant. Prostopinije is used in the Ruthenian Greek Catholic Church, Slovak Greek Catholic Church and among the Carpatho-Russian Orthodox.

The tradition of Prostopinije chant is used in the lands of Galicia, Volhyn and Ruthenia. The Prostopinije traces its roots to the Slavic traditions of Old Kievan chant and Bulgarian chant, both stemming from the ancient Byzantine chant tradition; however, it was also affected by the local folk Carpathian music. The Prostopinije chant is purely monodic, lacking ison or any other support, as well as folk choral polyphony. Melodically, Prostopinije resembles Znamenny Chant, and is closely related to it historically, but is considerably richer with chromatic movements, reflecting its relative closeness to the Bulgarian branch of the Byzantine tradition.

Religion in Slovakia

Christianity is the predominant religion in Slovakia. The majority (62%) of Slovaks belong to the Latin Church of Catholicism; with the addition of a further 4% of Greek (Byzantine) Catholics, all Catholics account for 66%. Members of a Protestant denomination, mainly Lutheran or Reformed, account for 9%. Members of other churches, including those non-registered, account for 1.1% of the population. The Eastern Orthodox Christians are mostly found in Ruthenian (Rusyns) areas. The Catholic Church divides the country into 8 dioceses including 3 archdioceses in two different provinces. The Slovak Greek Catholic Church is a Metropolitan sui iuris Church with three Eparchies in Slovakia and one in Canada. Generally about one third of church members regularly attend church services. The religious situation is dramatically different from that in the neighbouring Czech Republic, which is notable for its atheist or irreligious majority.

Other religions practiced in Slovakia include Bahá'í Faith, Hinduism, Islam, and Judaism. There are 18 registered churches and religions. There were an estimated 0.2% Muslims in Slovakia in 2010. While the country had an estimated pre-World War II Jewish population of 90,000, only about 2,300 Jews remain today. In 2010, there were an estimated 5,000 Muslims in Slovakia representing less than 0.1% of the country's population.In 2016, Slovak parliament passed a bill that requires all religious movements and organizations to have a minimum of 50,000 verified practicing members in order to become state-recognized. The bill has been both well-received, as a method of curbing potentially dangerous and abusive new religious movements, and criticized for favoring Christianity and breaching the ideal of state secularism. The law passed by a two-third majority in the parliament.

Slovak Catholic Church

Slovak Catholic Church may refer to:

Catholic Church in Slovakia, incorporating all communities and institutions of the Catholic Church in Slovakia

Slovak Greek Catholic Church, an Eastern Catholic church of the Byzantine Rite, centered in Slovakia

Slovak Old-Catholic Church, an Old Catholic Church in Slovakia

Slovak Catholic Eparchy of Bratislava

The Eparchy of Bratislava (Latin: Eparchia Bratislaviensis) is an eparchy of the Slovak Greek Catholic Church which covers the territory of western and central Slovakia, i.e., Bratislava, Trnava, Nitra, Trenčín, Žilina and Banská Bystrica regions (around 33,300 km²). The eparchy is a suffragan to the metropolitan Archeparchy of Prešov. Its cathedral is the Church of the Holy Feast of the Cross in central Bratislava.

Slovak Catholic Eparchy of Košice

The Eparchy of Košice is an eparchy of the Slovak Greek Catholic Church which covers the territory of the Košice Region in Slovakia. The eparchy is suffragan to the metropolitan Archeparchy of Prešov. It was established on 30 January 2008 by Pope Benedict XVI on the basis of the Apostolic Exarchate created previously (on 21 February 1997) by his predecessor John Paul II.

Slovak Catholic Eparchy of Saints Cyril and Methodius of Toronto

Slovak Catholic Eparchy of Saints Cyril and Methodius of Toronto (Latin Eparchia Sanctorum Cyrilli et Methodii Torontini Slovachorum ritus Byzantini, Slovak Eparchia svätých Cyrila a Metoda pre Slovákov byzantského obradu v Toronte) is an Eparchy for Byzantine-rite Eastern Catholics of Slovak origin in Canada. It is part of the Slovak Greek Catholic Church sui iuris, however it is not suffragan to the metropolitan Archeparchy of Prešov, but it is subject immediately to the Congregation for the Eastern Churches. Its territory is extended on the whole territory of Canada. Its bishop is member of the Council of Hierarchs of the Slovak Greek Catholic Church sui iuris.

The Eparchy was erected on 13 October 1980 by Pope John Paul II, who though Pope of the Roman Catholic Church, appoints the heads of some of the Eastern Catholic Churches (after consulting with the Congregations for Bishops and of the Eastern and Mission Churches, as well as the given area's Eastern Church and Western bishops, and sometimes after an election has been held by the given Church's synod council) when they lack the full structure of an eastern church such as having a patriarch, catholicos or archbishop major. Its Patron Saints are Saints Cyril and Methodius. The first bishop was Michael Rusnak, C.SS.R. (from 13 October 1980 to 11 November 1996). The Eparchy was recently a vacant see (sede vacante) more than two years, because on 7 May 2016, Pope Francis transferred Bishop John Stephen Pazak, who had been in office since December 2000, as Bishop (Eparch) of the Eparchy of Holy Mary of Protection of Phoenix of the Ruthenians, in Phoenix, Arizona, to serve as Apostolic Administrator of the Eparchy of Saints Cyril and Methodius of Toronto until the appointment of a new Bishop (Eparch). On 5 July 2018, Fr. Marián Andrej Pacák, C.SS.R. was named the Bishop of the Eparchy.

As of 2016 the Cathedral of the Nativity of the Mother of God in Toronto was serving as a Cathedral Church.

Slovak Catholic Metropolitan Archeparchy of Prešov

The Slovak (Greek) Catholic Archeparchy of Prešov (Latin: Archieparchia Presoviensis, until 2008 Eparchy of Prešov) is the Metropolitan archeparchy (Eastern Catholic Archdiocese) of the Byzantine Rite Slovak Greek Catholic Church which covers the territory of the Prešov Region.

As of 2004 it had 136,593 Greek Catholic faithful. and its seat is in Prešov, where it has the cathedral see Greckokatolícka katedrálny chrám sv. Jána Krstiteľa; it also has a minor basilica Farský chrám Nanebovzatia Presvätej Bohorodičky, bazilika minor, in Ľutina. Current archeparch is the Jesuit Ján Babjak.

It has two suffragan dioceses : Eparchy of Košice and Eparchy of Bratislava.

Slovak Greek Catholic Church hierarchy
Eparch outside
mathernal territory
Bible and
By country
of the faithful

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