Zaborovsky, Rafail

Zaborovsky, Rafail [Zaborovs’kyj, Rafajil] (secular name: Mykhailo), b 1677 in Galicia, d 22 October 1747 in Kyiv. (Portrait: Rafail Zaborovsky.) Orthodox bishop. He studied at the Kyivan Mohyla Academy and the Moscow Theological Academy, where he later taught rhetoric (1718). After serving as a chaplain in the Russian navy he became archimandrite of the Tver Monastery and a member of the Holy Synod in 1723. In 1725 he was consecrated bishop of Pskov. He was elevated to the office of archbishop of Kyiv by the tsar in 1731, and he later convinced the church authorities to restore Kyiv eparchy as a Kyiv metropoly, whereupon he took the title ‘Metropolitan of Kyiv, Halych, and Little Russia’ in 1743. A supporter of Archbishop Teofan Prokopovych, Zaborovsky carried out the Russian government's policy of destroying the autonomy of the Ukrainian church by instituting the Dukhovnyi reglament of 1721 and other synodal ukases. He did, however, raise the academic standards and improve the economic standing of the Kyivan Mohyla Academy. He published a new statute for the academy, reformed the curriculum (adding new courses in more modern disciplines), and provided much money for the expansion of the academy's buildings and for scholarships for poor students. The academy even briefly became known as the Mohyla-Zaborovsky Academy. The Great Bell Tower of the Kyivan Cave Monastery (1736–45), the bell tower of the Saint Sophia Cathedral, the baroque Zaborovsky Gate, and a number of other buildings were constructed during his tenure as metropolitan. A biography of him by Petro Orlovsky appeared in Trudy Kievskoi dulhovnoi akademii (1908).

Arkadii Zhukovsky

[This article originally appeared in the Encyclopedia of Ukraine, vol. 5 (1993).]

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