Archbishop Gallagher met with His Beatitude Sviatoslav in Kyiv

Sunday, 22 May 2022, 17:27
On Thursday, May 19, archbishop Paul Richard Gallagher, Secretary for Relations with States within the Holy See during his three-day visit to Ukraine, he visited the Patriarchal Cathedral of the Resurrection of Christ in Kyiv and met with His Beatitude Sviatoslav, the Father and Head of the UGCC.

Visiting the Patriarchal Cathedral of the Resurrection of Christ, the Secretary for Relations of the Holy See with States accompanied by the Head of the UGCC went to the cathedral's underground, where hundreds of civilians hid from russian bombs and missiles during active hostilities around Kyiv (February-March 2022). The archbishop asked in detail about all the moments of these most difficult days.

During a personal meeting with the Secretary of State for Relations with the Holy See, His Beatitude Sviatoslav spoke about how the UGCC has reacted to the circumstances of the war from the first minutes of its breakout in terms of humanitarian crisis and how the Church tries to serve civilians and the Ukrainian army.

The service of military chaplains was also discussed. “Today, the institutionalization of the military chaplaincy in Ukraine opens up opportunities and demonstrates the need to create a separate military ordinariate for the proper care of servicemen”, said the Head of the UGCC.

Furthermore, His Beatitude Sviatoslav presented to Archbishop Gallagher the expectations of Ukrainians regarding the role of the Apostolic See in the current situation of russia's war against Ukraine. According to the Head of the UGCC, the role of the Vatican is, on the one hand, to give a proper assessment of this war in terms of both international law and Christian morality, and on the other – that the Holy See, particularly through diplomatic service, play its role in stopping aggression.

The Head of the UGCC thanked Archbishop Paul Richard Gallagher for his visit to Ukraine, noting that today the whole world is paying attention to Ukraine: heads of state, diplomatic representatives and governmental officials are coming to the country. The Head of the UGCC highlighted the importance that now such a figure as the Secretary for Relations with States, in fact, the Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Vatican, is in Kyiv. “This is a very powerful diplomatic sign of support of Ukraine and the Ukrainian people from the Apostolic See. We hope that this visit will be fruitful”, mentioned His Beatitude Sviatoslav.

In Kyiv, the Secretary for Relations with the States also met with a delegation of the RCC episcopate in Poland, which is currently paying a solidarity visit to Ukraine. They exchanged views on the international level of support for Ukrainian refugees and on the response of the international community, in particular the Catholic community, to Ukraine's humanitarian needs, which, as the Head of the UGCC noted, “are not declining today”. “Apparently, the humanitarian challenge is just beginning to show its real dimensions. The worst times in the humanitarian sphere are probably ahead of us,” His Beatitude Sviatoslav stressed.

We remind that Secretary of State for Relations Paul Richard Gallagher was paying a three-day visit to Ukraine from May 18 to 20.


The UGCC Department for Information


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