The Head of the UGCC to the Ukrainians in Canada: «Ukraine has been bleeding for three years now but she's still alive…»

Tuesday, 28 February 2017, 09:42
It's God's Providence that at such remarkable, deep moment of Liturgical Year, the Bishops of the Constant Synod, which is the highest body of governance of our Church, have arrived in Toronto UGCC eparchy. Today the Bishops went out to different eparchial parishes in order not only to pray in various places, but to learn you better, hear about your joys and pains, so that everyone of you felt that motherly Church in Ukraine loves you and cares about you.

This was said by the Head and Father of the UGCC His Beatitude Sviatoslav during the banquet in the city of St. Catharines (province Ontario, Canada) on the 26th of February, on Forgiveness Sunday.

The Major Archbishop of the UGCC expressed the words of gratitude to the representatives of Ukrainian Orthodox Church in Canada present  at the event: "I ask you to pass on our brotherly love and benevolence to all of your brothers and sisters in Canada.  We ask you for forgiveness at the beginning of Lent and forgive you, too. For, when we really long to restore the unity of our presently divided, but still unified Kyivan Church, then God Himself directs us to the right path."

His Beatitude Lubomyr taught us that "we have nothing except a good name." So the Head of the Church called the Ukrainians in Canada keep this name, live by it and share it with others. The Head of the Church passed on to all his greetings from Ukraine - "from the nation that is truly suffering." Back in 2014, the Synod of Bishops of the UGCC wrote a full-of-pain letter to the international community called "Ukraine is bleeding." As the speaker explained, while writing it, the Bishops used as a guide the letter of the blessed Metropolitan Andrej during Holodomor, who had then become the single voice of the Ukrainian people, - "Ukraine in dying agony." "Today Ukraine has been bleeding for three years already, but she's still alive. Today the body of our nation has been going through the processes which can be compared with the resurrection of the Body of Christ.  We don't understand and don't know everything but we have faith which gives us hope. No one can explain how Ukraine has been resisting alone against one of the strongest states of the world. We are standing thanks to God's strength,  grace of the Holy Spirit and intercession of the Most Holy Virgin Mary," he added.

Then the Primate of the UGCC gave such guidelines for Lent: "There are three necessary conditions in order to spend Lent worthily: prayer, fasting, and alms. In prayer we are searching for a personal, live communication  with God, standing in truth before His face. When fasting, we long for nothing but God, Whom we are looking for. By alms, we show to the world how God is treating us. Because when God is merciful to me, how can I treat otherwise the one who stretches to me his or her empty hand?"  

His Beatitude Sviatoslav called the Ukrainians in Canada to pray for Ukraine: "Maidan withstood and defended the dignity of Ukraine thanks to the prayer. And today Ukraine is standing firm because she is praying. Three years ago the UGCC  in Ukraine called her children to pray for Ukraine every day at 9 pm. So, at least at this time, one day per week, fast for Ukraine and refuse from a certain pleasure or benefit. Recall our young men, who are in the trenches, amidst the cold winter are bravely defending our people and our Church." The Primate of the Church also called the Ukrainians in Canada to be merciful, and our Christian conscience will show to us, in which form and to whom we should give alms. "In order to be merciful, one doesn't need to be rich, but to be deeply faithful, feel the gift of forgiveness which God granted to us. Lent – is a pilgrimage from the slavery of sin to freedom. Ukraine is being today on the pilgrimage to freedom and joy of resurrection!" summed up His Beatitude Sviatoslav.

The UGCC Department of Information 

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