Sheptytsky, Atanasii

Image - Metropolitan Atanasii Sheptytsky (1728 painting).

Sheptytsky, Atanasii [Шептицький, Атанасій (Антоній); Šeptyc’kyj, Atanasij (Antonij)], b 1686 in Voshchantsi, near Sambir, Galicia, d 22 December 1746 in Lviv. Uniate metropolitan. He entered ca 1703 the Basilian monastery in Univ, where his uncle, Varlaam Sheptytsky, was archimandrite. In 1710 he was ordained and in 1713 appointed archimandrite of the Univ Monastery and coadjutor to his uncle, who was then bishop of Lviv, Halych, and Kamianets-Podilskyi (see Lviv eparchy). He succeeded his uncle as bishop in 1715. Sheptytsky founded the brotherhood at Saint George's Cathedral in Lviv and played a key role in organizing and conducting the 1720 Synod of Zamostia. On Lev Kyshka's recommendation he succeeded him as the Uniate metropolitan of Kyiv and all Rus’ (see Kyiv metropoly) in 1729. His election was not supported by the Basilian superiors and all the bishops. As bishop and metropolitan, Sheptytsky led the struggle against the Polish clergy's drive to convert Uniates to Roman Catholicism, the nobles' exploitation of the clergy and the peasants, and Polonization in general. In 1732 he founded the Univ Monastery Press to publish standardized liturgical books in accordance with the decisions of the Synod of Zamostia, and in 1739 he oversaw the reform of the Basilian monastic order.

[This article originally appeared in the Encyclopedia of Ukraine, vol. 4 (1993).]

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