Coat of arms and biography of His Excellency Bishop Włodzimierz Juszczak

His Excellency, Bishop
Ruling Bishop of the Wrocław-Gdańsk Eparchy


19 July 1957, Legnica (Lower Silesian Voivodeship)

Ordained a deacon:

8 May 1983, Warsaw – bishop Kazimierz Romaniuk (Latin)

Ordained a presbyter:

28 May 1983, Legnica – Archbishop Henryk Cardinal Gulbinowicz (Latin)

Episcopal chirotony and enthronement:

19 June 1999, Wrocław – Archbishop Jan Martyniak, Metropolitan of Przemyśl-Warsaw, Bishop
Bazyli Medwit, Exarch of Kyiv-Vyshhorod, Bishop Mychajło Hrynczyszyn, Exarch of France and


ul. Łaciarska 34/3, 50-146 Wrocław
tel./fax: +48 71 343 94 77 (curia), +48 71 343 94 79 (residence)

Studies, academic degrees:

Metropolitan Higher Seminary in Warsaw, 1983 – Master of Theology (STB),

Warsaw Theological Academy, Faculty of Canon Law, 1989 – STL,

Warsaw Theological Academy 1989-1991 – doctoral studies in Faculty of Canon Law

Church ministry and offices:

1983-1989 independent vicar in Bartoszyce and Asuny parishes,
1985-1989 independent vicar in Ostre Bardo parish,
1989-1993 novice master of the Basilian Order, prefect of Basilian seminarians in Warsaw,
1993-1994 parish priest in Węgorzewo, Wydminy and Chrzanowo parishes,
1993-1994 protopresbyter in Olsztyn,
1994-1999 parish priest in Warsaw, protoihumen (provincial superior) of the Basilian Order in
24 April 1999 episcopal nomination

Coat of arms

In the tripartite field the motifs of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross and of St Josaphat the Martyr are presented. These are the titles under which the Wrocław-Gdańsk Eparchy was established. The third motif is the burning pole, which is the coat of arms of the Basilian Order, a member of which is Bishop Włodzimierz. In the idea of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross the symbol of ‘elevated cross’ is used. The four steps below signify the testimony of the four Evangelists. The form of the cross refers to the tradition of Byzantine crosses, containing a top short bar with the the inscription over the Saviour's head. The colors also come from the symbolic of the Byzantine state.

The crosier on the right side of the coat of arms symbolises St Josaphat Kuncewicz. The red color of the crosier (zhezl) refers to the martyrdom of that saint Bishop. The four transverse black stripes refer to the stripes on the bishop's omoforion and indicate his archbishopric dignity.

In the middle field of the coat of arms a Basilian ‘stylos’ is placed. The coat of arms is placed on a mantiya (a type of mantle, which is a characteristic element of the Eastern episcopal garment in the Slavic countries) decorated with transverse stripes.

Above the coat of arms there are the insignia of episcopal dignity: the Eastern episcopal mitre, as well as the intersecting crosier (zhezl) and the cross. The insignia are in gold. At the top of the coat of arms there is a green episcopal hat with six tassels of the same color on each side.

The motto of Bishop Włodzimierz Juszczak, which reads in English: ‘Let's lift our hearts up’, comes from the Liturgy of St John Chrysostom and is placed at the bottom of the coat of arms.


HE Bishop Włodzimierz Juszczak was born on 19 July 1957 in Legnica. His father Bazyli Juszczak as a teenage boy was resettled together with his parents from Bednarka, a village in Lemkivshchyna near Gorlice, to vicinity of Zielona Góra as a part of the Operation Vistula. In 1946, his mother Iwanna (née Tełesnyćka) with her parents from Berezka (a village near Bircza) to Germany. On the way back from exile, the family learnt that 280 people were murdered there together with the priest, Fr. Biłyk, in May 1945. Thus she temporarily stayed in the village of Rosochata near Legnica. Here, in 1947, she met with resettled people from Lemkivshchyna. The parents of Bishop Włodzimierz met in the Western Territories and in 1956 they received the Holy Mystery (sacrament) of marriage. Their first son Roman received the Holy Mysteries of baptism and chrismation (confirmation) in the Greek Catholic Parish in Legnica, where Fr. Włodzimierz Hajdukiewicz carried out his pastoral ministry, and was officialy registered as the first person baptized in this newly formed parish. Roman Juszczak graduated from elementary school in Rosochata in 1972 and in the same year he began his education at the Ukrainian High School in Legnica. His class teacher was Ms Jarosława Kisielewska, an outstanding teacher devoted to her work. At that time the parish priest of Legnica and youth pastor was Mitred Archpriest, Fr. Jan Martyniak, later Greek Catholic Metropolitan Archbishop of Przemyśl-Warsaw.
After graduating from high school, on 31 August 1976, Roman Juszczak joined the Order of St. Basil the Great, with which he has kept in touch since he was still in elementary school. He took the religious name of Włodzimierz and entered the novitiate under the spiritual direction of Fr. Jozafat Romanyk. He made his first religious vows on 18 June 1978. He completed his philosophical and theological studies at the Metropolitan Higher Seminary in Warsaw in 1983. He made his permanent vows on 1 May 1983. On 8 May 1983, he was ordained a deacon. On 28 May of the same year, he was ordained a priest in Legnica by the Metropolitan of Wrocław, Henryk Cardinal Gulbinowicz. Then Fr. Włodzimierz worked as a priest in the parish in Bartoszyce, started in 1982 by Fr. Julian Gbur and in the parish in Asuny, existing since 1957 (Warmian-Masurian Voivodeship). From 1985, he also served the parish in Ostre Bardo, where the first parish priest was Fr. Bazyli Oszczypko. In 1984, he began extramural studies at the Warsaw Theological Academy, Faculty of Canon Law, which he completed with a degree of Licentiate of Sacred Theology (STL) in 1990.
In 1989, the protoihumen (provincial superior), Fr. Wasyl Medwit, later bishop and Exarch of Kyiv- Vyshhorod, called him to the Warsaw Monastery to take over the duties of novice master of the Basilian Order and prefect of Basilian seminarians in Warsaw. The service of Fr. Włodzimierz in the Warsaw monastery took place at a time when the Greek Catholic Church in Ukraine and all former communist countries came out of the underground (modern catacombs). To give a helping hand to the Basilian communities that had just come out of hiding, and thus to the whole Church, it was decided to open the Warsaw monastery for Basilian novices and students from Ukraine, Romania and Slovakia. In autumn 1993, Fr. Włodzimierz was transferred to the monastery in Węgorzewo, where he assumed the duties of parish priest and of protopresbyter (dean) in Olsztyn. However, he didn't stay long in Węgorzewo. After Fr. Wasyl Medwit was made a bishop, from July 1994, Fr. Włodzimierz took over his duties of protoihumen of the Basilian Order in Poland and returned to Warsaw.
With the help of Fr. Jozafat Romanyk, Fr. Melecjusz Biłyński, Fr. Marek Skórka, as well as religious brothers, he took care of students, the life of the entire province, while fulfilling the duties of a parish priest in Warsaw. With particular attention he took care of the Basilian monastery and church in Zasanie in Przemyśl, given back in 1996 by the state administration, having a dedicated collaborator in the person of Fr. Tymoteusz Fesz. On 24 April 1999, by decision of the Holy Father John Paul II, Fr. Włodzimierz Roman Juszczak was appointed bishop of the Wrocław-Gdańsk Eparchy of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church. Episcopal chirotony and enthronement took place on 19 June 1999. The bishop's seat is in Wrocław.
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