In all this unimaginably vast territory there are just 50 priests or so ministering to a widely scattered population of 50,000 or so Catholic faithful. Often these are no more than tiny communities, in some cases just a single Catholic family, with the next nearest Catholic community hundreds if not thousands of miles away.
Thanks in large degree to the heroic efforts of Saint John Paul II, the Berlin Wall came down and Communism no longer rules Eastern Europe. Yet, even today many Churches in the former Soviet territory need our vital pastoral and humanitarian support.
This ongoing need is mostly in Ukraine (home today to almost 5 million Ukrainian Greek-Catholics), where the Ukrainian Greek-Catholic Church was outlawed and virtually eradicated by Communist authorities, along with the Catholic Churches of Poland, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Croatia, Romania, Bulgaria and the former Yugoslavia.
Thank you for your support in helping this region keep the faith alive.
When Pope Saint John Paul II travelled to Ukraine in the year 2001, he beatified 25 martyrs of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church who had given their lives under communism for their faith in Jesus Christ and their fidelity to the Church.