“We ask the Holy Spirit to clothe the defenders of Ukraine with His power – to be defenders of God’s peace:” from the Head of the UGCC on Day 110

Wednesday, 15 June 2022, 22:31
On the day after Pentecost, the liturgical tradition of the Church addresses the Holy Spirit, the person of the Trinity closest to man, the Spirit of life, and the peace of God. In these days of war, the Church prays that the Holy Spirit will empower the defenders of Ukraine as defenders of peace and make all Ukrainians builders of God's peace, the forerunner of which is the Holy Spirit.


His Beatitude Sviatoslav, the Father and Head of the UGCC, said this in his daily address on June 13, the 110th day of the war.

“Last night, once again the entire eastern region of our homeland was on fire. Heavy fighting is taking place along the front lines. The situation is most critical, as in previous days, in the Luhansk region. The enemy is throwing the remnants of their forces there to achieve at least a feigned victory. Thanks to the courage of the sons and daughters of Ukraine on the 110th day of this war, the enemy has not achieved any of the goals he set for himself.  Our hearts ache the most for the lost human lives, for the innocently killed civilian women and children, for all those who suffer from the cruelty of the Russian aggressor, who suffer from this war that sows and reaps death,” said His Beatitude Sviatoslav, commenting on the military situation in Ukraine.

The Head of the UGCC thanked Pope Francis for reminding the world that the war in Ukraine continues, that the terrible crimes against humanity that are taking place in Ukraine cannot be ignored:

“Today I would like to thank the Holy Father Francis for appealing to the conscience of people around the world as we celebrate Pentecost: ‘Do not get used to war!’  We cannot get used to war, because getting used to it leads to murder and the suppression war crimes. As we know, these days news from Ukraine about the war is out of the headlines and other media.”

Ukraine is fighting for its freedom and dignity, and in this righteous struggle it receives the grace of the presence of the Holy Spirit, said His Beatitude Sviatoslav:

“But let the whole world hear: Ukraine is standing! Ukraine is fighting! And receiving the grace of the Holy Spirit, renewing His presence among us, Ukraine is praying for peace as never before! Ukraine prays to the Holy Spirit as a bearer of peace!”

On the day after Pentecost, the liturgical tradition addresses the person of the Holy Spirit: who He is for the Christian, what we know about Him, and why we ask for His presence among us.

“Today, on the second day of the ‘green’ feast of Pentecost, on the day immediately following Pentecost, our liturgical tradition draws our attention to the Holy Spirit, the third person of the Holy Trinity,” His Beatitude explained. “On the one hand, the Holy Spirit is closest to us among the three persons of God. As Christians, we live and act in Him. Our actions bear fruit only when we cooperate with the Holy Spirit.  On the other hand, we know very little about Him. However, the Holy Spirit can be known as a person through the experience of His presence in us. And we know that the Holy Spirit is first and foremost the Spirit Who gives life. That is why in our Ukrainian liturgical tradition we use the color green when we celebrate Pentecost. It is popularly known as “green holidays” in our culture. Our shrines are bedecked in greenery in order to show that the Holy Spirit, this life-giving breath of God, is the life-giving force that sustains us.”

The Holy Spirit is the Spirit of God's peace, the forerunner of God's plan for human life. Today Ukraine needs His strength from above, His presence among us, His Beatitude Sviatoslav explained:

“It is the Holy Spirit who is the Spirit of God's peace, because He reveals God's plan to each person, which is always a plan of peace, harmony, beauty, and eternal life. Conversely, those who start a war rebel against God's plan. This divine life-giving power, with which the apostles were clothed from on high in Jerusalem, continues to live in the body of our Church and our people. That is why today we ask: “O Holy Spirit, clothe the defenders of Ukraine with Your power from on high as defenders of peace! O God, Holy Spirit, make us bearers and builders of Your peace, which You bring to us! O Holy Spirit, come down, and in the midst of the sea of ​​death brought to Ukraine by the Russian invader, grant us a sea of ​​life that comes from You alone! Breathe your life-giving breath into Ukraine and the whole world. Renew, through yourself, O Holy Spirit, the face of today’s earth!”

The UGCC Department of Information



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