Glory to Jesus Christ!
Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ!
Today is Tuesday 23 August 2022 and for the 181st day, the Ukrainian people have been fighting an unequal battle with the Russian occupier, who set foot on our land and brings death, destruction, tears, blood, and unspeakable pain to the Ukrainian people.
Also, during the last day, in particular, during the last night, active combat operations were conducted almost along the entire front line. From the reports that Ukraine received this morning, the most active combat operations are taking place in the Donetsk region. The enemy is attacking in the direction of Bakhmut, in the direction of Avdiivka, in the direction of Slovyansk. The enemy is trying to attack the peaceful cities and villages of Ukraine. Again last night, our Dnipropetrovsk region was shelled with various types of rocket weapons. Again this night, our Kharkiv shuddered from Russian missiles. These nocturnal rocket strikes have already become a regular, terrifying reality of this city, and one third of all houses and the entire infrastructure of Kharkiv have already been destroyed. The enemy is also relentlessly shelling the border areas of Chernihiv Oblast and Sumy Oblast.
But Ukraine is standing. Ukraine is fighting. Ukraine is praying.
Today our people celebrate the day of the Ukrainian flag. Just on the eve of Ukraine’s Independence Day, our blue and yellow flag is in the centre of attention of the Ukrainian people today. In particular, during the war, the Ukrainian flag has become especially near and dear to the heart of every resident of Ukraine, because it acquired a new, deeper meaning. The Ukrainian flag, our blue and yellow flag, today is a certain symbol, a symbol of freedom and a symbol of peace.
It was necessary to see how those of our brothers and sisters who were under Russian occupation met the blue and yellow flag. Indeed, those who experienced torture, humiliation, and the horrors of mass shootings, when they saw the Ukrainian flag, did not hold back their emotions, because for them it was a flag of freedom, a hope for life.
Today, under this flag, our soldiers, our servicemen, go into battle and sprinkle this flag with their own blood. They protect peace today. And where there is peace, the blue and yellow flag flies today. But we know at what price this peace is obtained today. That is why this flag is so precious for every Ukrainian today.
But we Christians, when we pray, when we stand in prayer day and night, in prayer for victory, we see a kind of deep Christian symbolism in the colours of our flag. When we see blue above and yellow below, we experience these colours in a special way when praying the Lord’s Prayer. For us, this flag is, as it were, a personification, a symbol of this Lord’s Prayer, which our Lord and Saviour left for all of us Christians.
When we look into the blue sky, we hear the words “Thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.” And when we look at the yellow colour, which symbolizes the fields of Ukrainian wheat, we hear the words “give us this day our daily bread.”
Therefore, our people are experiencing a special day today. We thank the Lord God that this yellow and blue flag, our blue and yellow standard, proudly flies over our capital, which the enemy could not and will never be able to conquer.
And that is why we pray today: O God, bless our land with Your peace. Let Your will be done, both in heaven and on earth. Your will is always goodness, salvation, freedom, mercy, love, and peace. From the earth we raise a prayer to You, asking “give us this day our daily bread and forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us.”
O God, bless our land! Bless our homeland, bless its sons and daughters who fight for peace and freedom, listen to the prayers of millions of people who, with tears in their eyes day and night, beg You for the immediate end of this war, for victory over the unjust aggressor. O God, bless Ukraine!
May the blessing of the Lord be upon you through His grace and love of mankind, always, now and ever, and for ages of ages. Amen.
Glory to Jesus Christ!