Ukrainian Greek-Catholic Church Secretariat of the Head of the UGCC (Roma)
Glory to Jesus Christ!
Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ!
Today is 22 March 2022 and Ukraine is already experiencing the twenty-seventh day of the war.
Although there is a war going on, which is unjust, cruel, bloody, and deadly, spring in Ukraine warms our land in its arms. And with hope in God, in His power, in His protection and support, we defend our land.
Today, I would like to especially thank our pastors and volunteers who are tirelessly serving their people in these weeks and days. His Holiness Pope Francis emphasized that our people do not lack the closeness of their pastors.
Today we especially give thanks and pray for our bishops in Kharkiv, Zaporizhzhia, and Odesa. I visited our priests in the territory of the Kyiv Archeparchy, which today, in fact, is marked by this line of fire. We have towns, villages that are occupied, but there is a part of our archeparchy that has become a place of service that receives refugees from hotspots, but on the other hand it is also a place where everyone can find the help they need.
Our parishes, in particular in Zhytomyr, Vinnytsia, and Kyiv regions, have turned into humanitarian hubs, which are really trying to deliver humanitarian aid where it is really needed.
Speaking with our military chaplains, in their eyes, in their hearts, I really felt this pain, the pain of the fallen soldiers, the pain of the wounded civilians. But looking into the eyes of our priests, our pastors, our volunteers, in their eyes I saw the victory of Ukraine, because they are working for it, they live for it, they live in our very churches themselves. I saw a priest spending the night in the sacristy next to the holy altar, and with him are all the volunteers who are trying to serve, while the whole church is filled with humanitarian aid and people are constantly pouring in to get what they need.
Today I would like to thank all those who are collecting humanitarian aid for Ukraine. I want to assure you that our Church will do everything to ensure that every penny, every gift donated reaches its addressee, finds the specific person for whom you have performed an act of mercy.
Today we pray that the Lord God might together with the spring sun send peace to Ukraine. May the war stop! May the Lord God bless our land with His love and His peace! Let us pray for those who have suffered from the war! Let us help those who are fighting for life! Let us pray for Ukraine!
May the blessing of the Lord be upon you through His grace and love for humankind, always, now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.