Nykanor Abramovych

XX pagePoland, GermanyEcclesiastical figure

He was born in the village of Myzov in the Polissia region of Volhynia into the family of a poor deacon and teacher Nykandr Burchak-Abramovych and Olena Pynkevych, a descendant of an old theological family. He studied at Miletsk Theological Seminary, Volhynian Theological Seminary, Kyiv Commercial Institute, and after he was ordained a priest (1910), at Kyiv Academy of Theology from which he graduated in 1918.

During studies at Volhynia Theological Seminary he belonged to the Ukrainian community and was its head. On his elder brother P. Abramovych’s advice he became a collaborator, and later a full member of the Society of Volhynia Researchers. He took part in scientific trips and excavations, contributed to the journal Works of the Society of Volhynia Researchers, which published works on history, archaeology, geography, ethnography and geology of the territory.

During the Ukrainian Liberation Contest his old dream of the renewal of the remote Ukrainian church traditions began to come true. He was one of the members and founders of the Ukrainian Brotherhood of Our Saviour in Zhytomyr (January 1918). The Brotherhood was founded for joint religious, cultural and educational work in the native field, namely: protection of old Ukrainian church customs, church antiquities of Volhynia, publication of ecclesiastical books. He actively worked in the public and cultural field. In 1918, he edited the cultural and educational journal Svitets, and in 1919, together with S. Pidhirsky and A. Cher-kasky, – newspaper Hromadianyn. The same year he published the booklet Education in the Country.

In 1928–31, he was locked up in the Dermansky Monastery for the fact that he celebrated Mass in the Ukrainian language and came forward for the Ukrainisation of ecclesiastical life in the Ukrainian territories of Poland. In 1942, he took monastic vows and was ordained archimandrite, then consecrated as Bishop of Chyhyryn and vicar-administrator of the UAOC at the council of bishops in Pinsk.

In March 1942, he moved to Kyiv. In 1942 ^3, he was the Archbishop of Kyiv and Chyhyryn.

In 1943, he emigrated to Warsaw, then, in 1944, to Germany. In 1948, he was elected head of Theological Scientific Institute of the UAOC; edited Theological Herald, and headed the editorial board of the journal The Native Church.

In 1953, when Polikarp (Sikorsky) died N. Abramovych headed the UAOC in emigration.