The Park of Reformation is the biggest city park in Chernivtsi, Ukraine. The park is located in the southern part of the city and occupies the area of 70 hectares. There are paths for walking, two artificial lakes, sport grounds, and fields. There is the system of merry-go-rounds as well. Thousands of people visit the park each year. The park was established in 1968, and it was given a name, typical for that period of time, when the Soviet Union was in power – October.
Decommunisation of the October Park was necessary. In the 60s of the last century, the word “October” was used not for one of the autumn’s months, but as the symbol of the October Revolution, the perception of which is completely different today to that during the Soviet epoch. The October Revolution brought terror, pain and sufferings to Ukraine. The former October palace in Kiev is one of many torture chambers of NKVD, which thousands of Ukrainians have gone through.
Taking to consideration the low level of culture and moral in the society, where the absence of usual upbringing, post – Soviet corruptible mentality and bad habits have become the norm, and the lack of mutual respect can be felt everywhere, - the citizens of Chernivtsi have demonstrated active civic position supporting the petition about renaming of the October park to Park of Reformation. The petition was signed by the necessary number of people, and the issue was transmitted to the session of the city council.
According to the law of Ukraine “About the Condemnation of Communistic and National-Socialistic (Nazi) Totalitarian Regimes in Ukraine and the Prohibition of the Propaganda of Its Symbols”, the Chernivtsi city council has decided to meet the given petition on the 24th of January 2017 in order to change the name of October park: from the symbol of totalitarian regime – October Revolution, the park has become the European symbol of revival and freedom of speech – the Park of Reformation.
A lawyer, publicman Mykola Gunko, that came forward on the session of city council with a project about redesignating of park, became the activist of redesignating. "When we talk about Reformation, this is renewal, return to the proper state. We understand that it is necessary to go back to an order, to взаємоповаги, to the common to all mankind moral values" — the realizer of idea marked.
Chernivtsi is not the first city, where people got rid of the “October” name. In Mariupol the October district is renamed to the Central one, in Mykolaev October Avenue – Epiphany Avenue, in Poltava the October district has become Schevchenkivskii, in Zaporozhe the October district was renamed to Alexandrian. A great amount of villages and streets with the name “October” heve been decommunised. This name remains untouched, for obvious reasons, only in the occupied cities.
“Reformation” is a Latin word, formed with the prefix “-re”, added to the word “formation”. The term “formation” means giving the type or shape to a certain thing, and the prefix “-re” mean that this action repeats again. Therefore, the Reformation is the restoration of the original appearance and image. It means that earlier a certain form existed, which later had been deformed, so there is the necessity to reform it- to make it as it was in the beginning.
In the XIV century, the Reformation was the restoration of the original image of the European society. The epoch of Reformation of the XIV century is one of the most prominent periods in the history of the world. German philosopher, Hegel, called the Reformation the sense of the history of New Time. Indeed, when we look at the sources of modern western civilization, we can see that the Reformation was that foundation without which it is difficult to imagine our life today.
In 2017, the whole world celebrates 500 years anniversary of the epoch of Reformation, which has substantially changed the history of medieval Europe. The reforms have been established not only in culture, economics, and politics but in the conscience of the people as well. Such European countries as Germany, Great Britain, Switzerland, the Netherlands, Sweden, Denmark, and Norway have become the world leaders of social and economic development.
Classic science developed exactly in Europe during Reformation period. Besides social-political changes, it was also a religious movement for the reason of the oppression of the freedom of speech and the horrors of medieval inquisition, which were the results of the activity of religious-political power, the leaders of which were apologizing many times for the crimes against humanity, which they have committed. It is necessary to point out that the Reformation extended to other lands too – the principles of the Reformation were implemented in the USA and Canada.
In accordance with the decree of the President of Ukraine, in 2017 the people in our country together with the Western world celebrate 500 years anniversary of Reformation, sharing the values, implemented into practice in modern the most economically developed countries of the world – the authority of the right, honesty, diligence, high moral, and the protection of the freedom of speech. The citizens of Chernivtsi are sure that the park of Reformation will motivate to protect the freedom of speech and preservation of common to mankind moral values.