In memory of Artem Dymyd, UCU graduate, who perished in the war on 18 June 2022, defending Ukraine from the Russian occupiers. He was covered by mortar fire near Donetsk.
On 18 June, for the freedom of Ukraine, for my dignity and yours, for the unity of Europe, for peace in the world, Soldier Artemiy Dymyd gave his life. The son of Fr. Mykhaylo Dymyd, the first rector of the Lviv Theological Academy (now UCU), and noted, inspired iconographer Ivanka Dymyd-Krypyakevych. Grandson of miner Dmytro and Rozaliya Dymyd and leading representatives of the intelligentsia of Halychyna Roman and Lesya Krypyakevych. Great grandson of two great Ukrainians, historian Ivan Krypyakevych and underground priest and confessor of the faith Artemiy Tsehelskyi. Artemiy and hundreds of Ukrainians on this day gave their lives for Ukraine, for you, for me, for truth in this world.
Artemiy was a graduate of the History Program of the Ukrainian Catholic University. Still a student, he went to the front as a volunteer in 2014. Having finished his service, Artemiy tried out business and dove into the adventures of life. News of the escalation of the war reached him in the USA, from where he returned to his homeland and again became a defender of Ukraine. At the initiative of the family of Artem Dymyd, the Ukrainian Catholic University has started a scholarship fund in his name.
Artemiy was fearless. He made 100 parachute jumps. He visited many countries on bicycle but only made it to Iran on motorcycle.
Artemiy Dymyd, who had a father who raised him and was an example for him, is today meeting his heavenly Father. In 27 years, Artemiy visited 50 countries, and today has settled in a home where there are many rooms. His parents have great faith; they come from a family of martyrs and thank God for such a son. And in faith and truth they find strength at this moment of unspeakable loss.
I believe that the fire of his baptism burned in Artemiy’s heart, for a person who is not afraid already lives in eternity. At a time when almost everyone was afraid of almost everything, Artemiy was not afraid. He did not fear death. He felt God’s blessing, and so was able to give his life.
Today Ukraine and Ukrainians are changing the world. Consciously or unconsciously, people see how in this war the greatest love is being shown. “No one has greater love than this, to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.” (John 15:13) The world sees solidarity and courage. The mystery of transformation is happening through the fearlessness of our soldiers.
Are we aware of this? Do we draw conclusions? Are we, God forbid, minimizing the size of this great sacrifice which is happening before our eyes? These acts should change us all. This sacrifice calls us to look deeply into the mystery, so that we proceed without fear, in faith, hope, peace, and joy.
Author: UGCC Metropolitan Archbishop of Philadelphia Borys Gudziak, President of UCU