After visiting his sister Vera in Zagreb, then Yugoslavia, he discovered that his passport would not let him return to Ukraine and that he had been unknowingly exiled. After three weeks in Zagreb, where his poor health was treated by his nephew, Dr. Nikolych, Blessed Vasyl travelled to Rome on February 22, 1972, to live with exiled Major Archbishop [Patriarch] Josyf Slipyj. While in Rome, he met with Blessed Pope Paul VI and told him of the plight and status of the underground Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church. After obtaining a visa, Blessed Vasyl came to Canada on June 15, 1972, on the invitation of Metropolitan Maxim Hermaniuk to come live in Winnipeg. Upon arriving in Canada, his cousin-in-law, Dr. Zenon Matwichuk, took him under his medical care, but on June 30, 1973, Bishop Vasyl died a martyr’s death from the previous administration by the Soviets of harmful chemicals and electrical torture. While in Canada, he visited all five Canadian Ukrainian Catholic eparchies, giving the annual priests’ retreats, and travelled to Newark, Philadelphia, and other centres in the United States.
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