Dobrodiyka Jane (Yustena) Luchak fell asleep in the Lord on January 29, 2023, in Winnipeg. She is survived by her daughter Orysia Luchak (spouse Myron Tarasiuk), son Taras Luchak (spouse Karen Luchak), grandchildren Andriana Tarasiuk (spouse Simeon Rusnak), Nicholas Luchak (spouse Caroline Farris), Markian Tarasiuk, and greatgrandson Francis Dmytro Luchak Farris.
She was predeceased by her husband of 58 years, Right Reverend Protopresbyter Dmytro Luchak in 2010. She was predeceased by her parents, Yelena (Worobets) & Ivan Romaniuk who came to Canada in 1898 & 1903. Sadly, she was the last survivor of her siblings: Pearl, Mary, Anne, Nikolai & Harry.
Jane was born on March 20, 1929 and was raised on the family farm southwest of Andrew, Alberta. The family moved to Andrew in 1943. Her involvement with the Ukrainian Orthodox Church began at an early age. She was gifted with a beautiful singing voice; joining the church choir in Andrew at the age of twelve.
She completed high school in Andrew and then took her teacher training at the University of Alberta. After graduating she taught in various school districts in Alberta, and then later in Winnipeg. She also holds a certificate in dramatic arts
Dmytro and Jane met through the Church soon after his graduation from St. Andrews College and his return to Alberta. The handsome theology graduate was introduced to the beautiful young woman with that magnificent singing voice. They were married in 1952, following which Dmytro was ordained as a priest. As a dynamic team, they both served the church for their entire lives. Both have been recipients of numerous awards, recognitions, and hramota for their contributions to a flourishing church and community during their tenure.
Together they served in parishes in Alberta, Ontario and Manitoba as well as on a national basis when Dad served as the administrative head of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of Canada for ten years. Mom served as cantor and choir director in many of these parishes. Both mom and dad were tireless workers with youth organizations. Organizing locals where none existed, and helping existing ones flourish. Jane helped to organize the Holy Trinity Cathedral youth choir which sang liturgies at the Cathedral as well as at other churches and events. She also conducted the Winnipeg CYMK choir, and a Ukrainian Women’s Association (UWAC) choir. Jane also sang with the Dnipro Choir in Edmonton and the Holy Trinity Cathedral Choir and the O. Koshetz choir in Winnipeg.
Up until her late 80’s Mom was still an organizing force. She served as President of the Concordia Village Tenants Association for close to ten years, and at the same time initiated and choreographed and conducted annual Christmas Concerts with the residents as participants. She used her boundless energy to inspire her fellow seniors to perform two-a day shows for friends and family.
Jane served as Provincial President of the UWAC for three years, National Vice-President for six years, and held numerous other executive positions. Continuing into her “retirement” from both teaching and administrative leadership, she was a keynote speaker at a number of congresses and events throughout and in particular at the Canadian Ukrainian Congress.
She served as Head of the Christian and Heritage Department at the Consistory of the UOCC and began writing religious articles for younger audiences in the “Herald”. She continued to submit these published articles for a number of decades. A selection of her articles has been compiled in a publication released by the UWAC in 2002.
When Jane and Dmytro were not busy in their service, they enjoyed travelling. Their most memorable trips including the Holy Land, Ukraine and Greece. Likewise, they travelled to Oberamergau, Germany to see the Passion Play. She loved to attend performances by Rusalka, WSO, RWB and RMTC. She had a passion for reading, word search puzzles, gardening, and cooking. Many of her recipes have been immortalized in a cook book for the benefit of her grandchildren.
They were blessed with grandchildren (Andriana, Nicholas and Markian) who gave them great joy. Both Mom & Dad were actively involved in the lives of their precious “little” ones. Mom was delighted to get to know her great grandson. Recently, in her darkest days, it was a picture, or the voice, of little Francis that would get her to smile.
Mom and Dad sang a song called “Waltz of The Wind” to each other on their honeymoon. In a sentimental moment, we think that they are now singing this song to each other once again.
She has earned her eternal rest. The entire family loves you and misses you.
The family is grateful for the compassion and care shown by the staff of Holy Family Home. Thank you to Father Bohdan Lukie, Father Gene Maximiuk and Chaplain Hermann Dueck, Concordia Village.
Winnipeg Panahyda (prayer service) will take place on Wednesday, February 1 at 7:00 p.m. at Holy Trinity Ukrainian Orthodox Cathedral, 1175 Main Street in Winnipeg. Officiated by Rev. O. Rauliuk and Rev. G. Maximiuk.
The funeral rite will be held in Edmonton at 9:30 a.m. on Saturday, February 4th at St. John’s Cathedral, 10611-110 Ave., Edmonton, officiated by Rev. C. Zubritsky.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in Dobrodiyka Jane’s memory to the Ukrainian Museum of Canada-Edmonton Branch, Holy Trinity Ukrainian Orthodox Cathedral (Winnipeg), Ukrainian Orthodox Cathedral of St. John the Baptist (Edmonton), St. Andrew’s College (University of Manitoba) or the charity of your choice.
Memory Eternal. Vichnaya Pamyat. Вічная Пам’ять