The following statement was issued by Metropolitan Archbishop Borys Gudziak.
On behalf of Bishops Andriy Rabiy and Ivan Bura, clergy, religious and faithful of the Archparchy of Philadelphia, I greet Bishop Basil Losten and celebrate the 50th anniversary of his episcopal service.
This half-century of dedication to God and to the Church has been rich in pioneering and lasting ecclesial and civic achievements in various fields. As priest and hierarch, Bishop Basil exercised an untiring pastoral ministry of presence and commitment. Our priests and parishes, organizations and individual members of the community could count on his participation and support in times of spiritual need, personal trial or community crisis. His involvement and generosity were essential. He also demonstrated exceptional initiative and insight, exercised decades ago – but still relevant today.
Bishop Basil makes us proud! In the 1960s and 1970s, Bishop Basil led the construction of 240 apartments providing hospitality to hundreds of low-income Ukrainian, African, Asian and Latin American seniors – in fact, all the elderly in the need. Today, as the country struggles for harmony between peoples and races, the towers of Ascension Manor are a vivid witness to how our Christ-like Ukrainian Catholic community reaches out to our environment and offers hospitality and serves the needy and minorities in our neighborhoods.
Bishop Basil shared the good news of the graces of God in our Church, past and present!
During the 1980s, Bishop Basil led a campaign to draw the attention of the nation and the world to the plight of the Underground Church in Ukraine. The 1988 celebration of the millennium of Christianity in Ukraine was presented to a large global audience. The leadership of Bishop Basil was instrumental in these efforts. Millions of visitors to St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome for centuries will bow down and pray before the mosaic icons of Ss. Volodymyr and Olha that Bishop Basil sponsored.
Bishop Basil led us into the future! Bishop Basil helped our Church in Ukraine come to its knees in the 1990s and in the 2000s left the Eparchy of Stamford with a strong and young presbytery, the most diverse in our Church. The Eparchy and Saint Basil’s Seminary continue to prosper.
Bishop Basil calls us to go in depth! Starting his retirement in the 2010s, he was always there and ready to help. Bishop Losten represents a continuity between generations of faith living communion in Christ. More recently, Bishop Basil’s Endowment for a Ukrainian Church Studies Program at the Catholic University of America is committed to fostering an understanding of the life and pastoral service of our Church in America and in the world.
Bishop Basil is a man of solidarity! In the 2020s, as hierarchical superior of the Synod of Bishops of our Church, our Jubilee continues to be a trusted advisor to our Patriarch Sviatoslav in times of war in Ukraine, humanitarian crisis, pandemic and spiritual need and critical social. He advises and provides.
We implore the Lord that Bishop Basil’s gifts, service and generosity will serve the Eparchy of Stamford, our home town, and the worldwide Ukrainian Catholic Church for many years to come. We thank you, dear Bishop Basil, and pray that you will continue to receive the visit of the Holy Spirit and that God will grant you health for many happy years! ногая і благая літа!
+ Borys (Gudziak)
Metropolitan Archbishop of Philadelphia for Ukrainian Catholics in the United States