Encountering the Living Presence of Jesus:
Bishop Bryan sees 10th Anniversary
as a Journey of Missionary Discipleship
Kyla B. Predy ‖ Photo Credit: Linden S. Predy
Saskatoon, SK — On Saturday, June 23, 2018, our Eparchy will be celebrating the 10th Anniversary of the Episcopal Ordination of His Excellency Bishop Bryan Bayda, CSsR. The evening will include an Episcopal Divine Liturgy at 5:00 (Ukrainian Catholic Cathedral of St. George, Saskatoon), cocktails at 6:30 and a Banquet at 7:00 (St. George’s Cathedral church auditorium). Information on where to get your tickets will be included at the bottom of this article.
In honour of this occasion, I was granted the opportunity to interview His Excellency about his time in office. We had a rich conversation. While Bishop Bryan spoke about his experience in the office, he emphasised the importance of encountering the living Jesus to his ministry. Particularly, it is through encountering the presence of God that his vocation of Bishop and missionary discipleship can be lived out.
We began the interview by discussing when he had first heard that he would be made a Bishop. The seat of the Bishop was something Bishop Bryan never expected to be a part of his vocation story. When he discovered the news, he felt “some disbelief, panic… spiritual soberness, and then resign.” His episcopal ordination took place on the 27th of June 2008, in Saskatoon, at theUkrainian Catholic Cathedral of St. George.
Bishop Bryan shared what he has found most difficult since his episcopal ordination. “I thought there would be a… a routine throughout the year of busy moments and slower, and less stressful times, but to my surprise there has been steady pressure. The image I have is of a water dam that may through different seasons be full or partially empty, yet the water that streams from the dam is constant. The pressure is constant.”
Even through this pressure, Bishop Bryan expressed gratitude for his time in the Eparchial office. During the last ten years “many in the Eparchy have come to be moved by the Holy Spirit: to have an Eparchial Appeal, a forum on Stewardship, to re-evaluate the decisions we have to make as an Eparchy for the next ten to fifteen years,” Bishop Bryan explained. “I think the Holy Spirit has been preparing the people for change, for which I just happen to be in the office at the time of.”
Much has changed for Bishop Bryan. He spoke of the “awesome responsibility of, you know, shepherding spiritually.” Since becoming the Bishop he has had to alter his approach to answering questions asked of him, whether they were spiritual, catechetical, or pastoral. As priest, he would answer from where his head and heart were. Now Bishop Bryan reminds himself that people may and will perceive his answers as a “well thought-out, deliberate saying, teaching pronouncement [or even as an] expression of faith.” In both the need to speak mindfully of his role, and with constant fidelity to the Church, Bishop Bryan appreciates the importance of prayer to speaking with spiritual disposition.