Saturday, 8 March 2014

Shevchenko's Hromada in Calgary

Taras Shevchenko monument on the Dnipro River near Kaniv
My fond recollection of singing, performing, reciting Taras Shevchenko's amazing writing spans my entire lifetime. Ukrainian school was a place to form some of my strongest life-time friendships. Today, a Canadian public school student by law may study a variety of languages, and some very fortunate ones in a bilingual Ukrainian and English setting. Studying the great literature of the world, one such Saskatoon young person has also learned to love the powerful, moving works of Taras Shevchenko, the bard of Ukraine. She writes : "When all of the awful events happened there, almost leading to war, I was honestly broken, and it made me think a lot about how Shevchenko fought for the freedom of our people. One night I woke up in the middle of my dream and started writing, it was like I was under a spell, wasn’t sure what I was doing in other words. I wrote a poem called “It’s been 200 years” it both talks to the people of Ukraine and about the 200 anniversary of T. Shevchenko."

Kateryna by Taras Shevchenko 1842
Уже 200 років
Там де калина хиталася з вітром,
трава колихалася скрізь.
Тарас Шевченко, наш милий,
писав нам добрий заповіт.
"Любіть, ви діти Україну,
не загубіть коріння все своє,
також любіть ви матір свою милу,
не забувайте слово ви моє.,,

Не бійтесь люди ви свободи,
скажіть ви ворогам своїм.
Шевченко мав таку уже нагоду,
тепер черга і наша розказати всім.
Пройшло вже 200 років,
але пам'ятати будемо завжди,
Героя, Кобзара, Надію,
напротягом як можна,
по землі свобідно йти!
Написала Оля Пільченко                                       

Canada's remarkable diversity, pluralism, tolerance and opportunity is in stark contrast with the events currently pressing on Ukraine, especially Crimea.  In response, many groups in the international diaspora are spontaneously organizing vigils, prayer groups and other activities in support of Ukraine's right to choose their future - their government - their national priorities, and their neighborhood friends. Heros with a cause, indeed!
Calgary's Ukrainian community is gathering to honor Taras Shevchenko on Sunday, March 9, 2014 at Assumption Ukrainian Catholic Church Hall 704-6 STreet NE at 3 PM.  Following the event, the Ukrainian community invites Calgarians of good will to meet for prayer and fellowship in front of old City Hall, where the City of Calgary will be flying the beautiful blue and yellow flag of Ukraine in solidarity with freedom loving people everywhere, especially Ukraine.  Thanks to Canada for its principled stance on the emerging crisis in Ukraine! 
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