Ukraine: Church helps refugees and prays for peace

THE CATHOLIC CHURCH IN UKRAINE continues to place its hopes in peace talks and diplomatic solutions for the current crisis. This was the message relayed by the Latin Catholic Metropolitan Archbishop Mieczyslaw Mokrzycki, of Lviv, during a visit to the international headquarters of Aid to the Church in Need (ACN) in Königstein, Germany, on the eve of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

Throughout the country, he explained, the Church has been preparing for a potential wave of refugees. “We are ready to welcome people into our churches and provide them with food and water. We have organized first-aid courses for priests, religious and laity, so they can care for the wounded.” Archbishop Mokrzycki added that some Ukrainian refugees have already arrived in the west of the country and that “we have already rented some empty houses that will provide accommodation for them.”

Despite the very tense situation, the archbishop said that there is always hope for a compromise. “War does not bring any solutions, only destruction, suffering and lack of peace,” Archbishop Mokrzycki insisted.

Archbishop Mokazycki

The archbishop expressed himself profoundly moved by the level of international solidarity with Ukraine. “We are most grateful to the entire universal Church, and especially to Pope Francis, who has issued a worldwide appeal for prayer for Ukraine,” he said.

“I would like to repeat this appeal: Continue this prayer! Keep on praying, until the final peace comes!” Archbishop Mokrzycki urged.

—Andre Stiefenhofer