From the Head of the UGCC on the 99th day of the war: What does it mean to pray for Ukraine during the war and for its victory over enemies?

Saturday, 04 June 2022, 13:07
What does it mean to pray for Ukraine during the war? What is the prayer for Ukraine's victory in this bloody war? His Beatitude Sviatoslav, the Father and Head of the UGCC called on Ukrainians to reflect on these two questions on the 99th day of Russia's war against Ukraine, when the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church celebrates the Ascension and begins the Missionary Decade.

In his daily address, the Head of the UGCC pointed out that heavy fighting was taking place along the entire front line, in particular in the Luhansk region, where Severodonetsk is bravely defending itself. Peaceful cities and villages in the north of our Motherland, as well as Mykolaiv in the south are under attack. Ukrainian people are being evicted en masse from the occupied territories in southern Ukraine. Yesterday the Lviv region, at the foot of our glorious Carpathians, came under rocket attacks.

On this day the Primate explained the meaning of the feast of the Ascension of the Lord, which is celebrated in Ukraine. This holiday, he says, shows the fullness of the mission of Jesus Christ, the messenger of the Father to mankind. Christ came as a man, incarnated, died and rose again to give people the opportunity to receive forgiveness of sins. But ascending to heaven, Jesus promises another Messenger, the Comforter, the Holy Spirit, who will be the power which the apostles clothe in.

Therefore, from the feast of the Ascension of the Lord, explains the Head of the Church, we start waiting for the third person of God, the Holy Spirit come to us and be present among us.

“In our Church since ancient times, yet in a renewed tradition, those ten days between the Ascension and the Descent of the Holy Spirit are called the Missionary Decade. We pray daily, listen to God's word to fulfill our Christian mission in this world and personal life mission. This year, the Missionary Decade will probably be special as it is happening during the war”, told the Head of the UGCC.

His Beatitude Sviatoslav invites us to walk together through this Missionary Decade in Prayer and Meditation. After all, everyone who has received the gift of faith, he says, has a task, a vocation to share that faith, join the mission of the Church, the preaching of the Holy Gospel in the modern world.

At the beginning of the Missionary Decade, the Head of the UGCC urged Ukrainians to consider two questions: What does it mean to pray for Ukraine during the war and for Ukraine's victory in this bloody war? And what does it mean to pray for enemies?

The answer to the first question, in his opinion, becomes clear in the light of the Gospel of Christ and the content of today's holiday. We, Ukrainian Christians, must fulfill the mission that God gives to our Motherland and our Church, to be witnesses and preachers of the resurrection of Christ and preachers to all nations of the gift of repentance, which means reconciliation with God.

And what does it mean to pray for enemies and victory over them? The Archbishop explains: “The peace that Christ proclaims and gives to His disciples after the Ascension means the restoration of the original Divine harmony, the original plan of God for His creation.

“Peace is something more than the absence of war. Peace is the restoration of God's wisdom revealed in the created world. And praying for victory over enemies, we pray for victory over all those who go against God's plan, first of all over the devil and his servants, and then over those who do not allow each of us to fulfill this mission of God, taking our lives, freedom, home and our land. But we also pray that the devil does not prevent our Church, our people, from carrying out that mission.”

“O God bless Ukraine! O God bless the Ukrainian army! God, bless Your children, gather them all into Your one, holy, catholic and apostolic Church. And today let us blaze with the spirit of mission and preaching of Your Divine Gospel”, asks the spiritual leader of Ukrainians.

The UGCC department for Information



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