Photo at left appeared November 16, 1974 in The Ukrainian Weekly.

Religious freedom advocate

Rev. Vins (1928-1998) and Rev. Harbuziuk are standing outside the Ukrainian Baptist Church of Chicago, 1042 North Damen Avenue.

Rev. Georgi Vins sits in front of the choir of the Ukrainian Baptist Church of Chicago.

З ліва (from left): Олесь Гарбузюк (Alex Harbuziuk);  Ігор Домашовець (Igor Domashovetz);  О. Митрофорний Протоєрей Маріян Бутринський (Rev. Marian Butrynsky, pastor of Saints Volodymyr and Olha Ukrainian Catholic Church in Chicago);  пастор Георгій Вінс (Pastor Georgi Vins);  Rev. Olexa Harbuziuk (Олекса Гарбузюк), president of the  All-Ukrainian Evangelical Baptist Fellowship (diaspora); Софія Гарбузюк; Ніна Возьна, голова сестринське служіння при об'єднанні (Nina Wozny, president of women's ministries of the Ukrainian Evangelical Baptist Convention).

      Rev. Harbuziuk was a strong advocate of religious freedom for Ukraine and throughout the Soviet Union. He traveled the world to speak at various conferences as he campaigned tirelessly for freedom from religious persecution.
   He was a signatory to "An Appeal for Religious Freedom in the Soviet Union on the Occasion of the Millennium of Christianity in Kievan Rus' " -- which was a project of the James Madison Foundation in Washington, D.C. Ten copies of the "Appeal" were hand-delivered to the Soviet Embassy in Washington, D.C., on April 25, 1988. The "Appeal" was publicly released at a Washington press conference on April 27.

A crowd at O'Hare International  Airport welcomes Rev. Georgi Vins to Chicago in 1979.

A big crowd at the Ukrainian Baptist Church of Chicago listens to Rev. Georgi Vins speak. He is being translated by Rev. Bura.

Rev. olexa  Harbuziuk Legacy

Пастор олекса Романович Гарбузюк

Story was printed in March 1975 in The Ukrainian Weekly.

Rev. John Polischuk, pastor of the Ukrainian Baptist Church of Chicago, directs the church choir on June 8, 1980. A banquet was held in the afternoon celebrating the first anniversary of freedom for Pastor Vins and his family. Seated from left: Rev. Wasyl Bura (Василь Бура), pastor of the Ukrainian Baptist Church in Detroit; Pastor Vins; David Heywood Swartz, a commissioned officer in the foreign service of the U.S. State Department [later he became an ambassador]; Rev. B. Robert Biscoe, from the American Council of Christian Churches; and Rev. Olexa R. Harbuziuk.

Rev. Joseph Stowell II, national representative for the General Association of Regular Baptist Churches, meets with Rev. Georgi Vins and Rev. Olexa Harbuziuk at GARBC headquarters in Illinois in 1979.

         Rev. Harbuziuk spoke at a missionary conference that was held February 3-6, 1980 at Union Grove Baptist Church in the state of Wisconsin. Rev. Harbuziuk also spoke to students at the school operated by the church. Unfortunately, Rev. Vins was unable to attend.

Story above was printed July 8, 1979.


Story below was printed in 1977.

This is the cover page of a transcript of a television program that aired July 3, 1977 on NBC-TV, with Rev. Harbuziuk as one of the participants.

PHOTO ABOVE: Baptist preacher Georgi Vins (center) is welcomed at O'Hare International Airport in Chicago in 1979 after being released in a prisoner exchange between the Soviet Union and the United States. At right is the Rev. Marian Butrynsky (О. Митрофорний Протоєрей Маріян Бутринський), pastor of Saints Volodymyr and Olha Ukrainian Catholic Church in Chicago.