Biography of Monsignor Ryszard Szyszko-Bohusz

Born in 1881 in Pavlograd. Graduated from Zhytomyr Seminary and St. Petersburg Ecclesiastical Academy with a master’s degree in theology; ordained in 1906. Served in the parish in Kortse, Novohrad-Volynskyi deanery; from 1910 he was vicar of St. Nicholas parish in Kiev and religion teacher at the military academy. He was suspected of belonging to the Jesuit Order and thus from February 1911 he was under quiet surveillance of the authorities, but nothing suspicious was noted by the police. From March 1912 he served at St. Michael the Archangel parish in Obdovka, Balt deanery; later, at Sts. Peter and Paul church in Yarmolintsy, Proskurov district, and later at the Dominican church in Kamianets-Podilskyi. With the beginning of the Polish-Soviet War, he left for Poland. November 15, 1920 – appointed chancellor of the Diocese of Kamianets-Podilskyi by Bishop Peter Mankowski. He became a monsignor; served as pastor of a parish in Proskurov deanery. In 1922 he was arrested in a case against Catholic clergy and laity charged with “resistance to the confiscation of, and concealment of, church valuables.” Tortured during the prison investigations. September 2, 1922 – sentenced to execution by firing squad as “an incorrigible enemy of the Soviet regime” [Revolutionary Tribunal]. Thanks to the efforts of the Polish consulate in Kharkiv and the energetic appeals of parishioners, his execution was commuted to five years in prison. In September 1923 he was released from jail on his own recognizance. [Footnote: He immediately informed his superiors that he had been forced to agree to "voluntary" collaboration.] He served in Zinkov, where in 1924 he was again arrested, but soon released. [Footnote: As a result of his energetic activity, the number of rosary groups increased from 50 to 150 - each group had approximately 15 members.] He served in Tynno, Proskurov deanery, where he was arrested on October 20, 1929, and drawn into the investigation in a case against Catholic clergy (“Priests Case”). In 1930 he was transported to Kharkiv Prison for further investigation, and then to Kiev Prison. June 27-30, 1930 – a closed trial at which he was sentenced under Articles 54-3, 4, -5, -6 and -11 of the Criminal Code of the Ukrainian SSR to eight years in prison with loss of rights for five years [Extraordinary Session, Supreme Ct., UkrSSR]. January 1931 – transferred to the solitary confinement block at Yaroslavl Prison, then in August 1933 sent to Solovetsky Special Purpose Camp. In 1937 he was transferred to the prison block. November 25, 1937 – sentenced to death [Special Troika, Directorate, NKVD, Leningrad oblast]. December 8, 1937 – shot, in Leningrad Prison. Sources: Archive of the Directorate of the FSB, Arkhangelsk oblast; Dzwonkowski, pp. 471-472; Madaƚa, p. 154; Osipova (1996), p. 212; Protocols of the Sessions of the Special Troika of the Directorate, NKVD for Leningrad oblast; Investigatory Matter 1733 fp, Archive of the TsGAOO (Ukraine); Sokolovskyi, p. 232; GARF, f. 8406, op. 2, d. 5647, l. 4, 8, 10, 35, 41, 47, 52
Variant Names:
Szyszko-Bohusz, Ryszard; Shishko-Bogush, Richard (Ryshard) Iustinovich
Pavlohrad (Ukraine); Z︠H︡ytomyr (Ukraine); Saint Petersburg (Russia); Novohrad-Volynsʹkyĭ (Ukraine); Kiev (Ukraine); Proskuriv (Ukraine); Kam'i︠a︡net︠s︡ʹ-Podilʹsʹkyĭ (Ukraine); Zinʹkiv (Khmelʹnyt︠s︡ʹka oblastʹ, Ukraine); Kharkiv (Ukraine); Kiev (Ukraine); I︠A︡roslavlʹ (I︠A︡roslavskai︠a︡ oblastʹ, Russia); Solovetski Island (Russia)
male; clergy and religious; executed