The Bishops of Germany say they "...unequivocally condemn the actions of the Russian Federation. We stand with the Ukrainian nation..."

The Catholic Bishops of Germany have joined the World Council of Churches (WCC) and European Churches in urging Patriarch Kirill of Moscow to take a stand against the ongoing war in Ukraine. The appeal was made on March 11, 2022, as they concluded their spring plenary assembly in Vierzehnheiligen, which opened on 7 March with a special prayer for peace. (Excerpt from Vatican News) (Image Screenshot of the German Bishops at Mass during the Plenary Assembly)
FULL TEXT Statement from the DBK: 
The plenary assembly of the German Bishops' Conference, which is currently meeting in Vierzehnheiligen, is also marked by the war in Ukraine. Given the dramatic situation, how could it be otherwise! The bishops invoked the fourteen Holy Helpers venerated at this site during Monday's opening service and prayed for peace. A detailed debate is planned for tomorrow in the General Assembly, which will also include external experts. A declaration, a message for peace, is to be published afterwards.

But of course the bishops are not at the beginning of their deliberations, so that I can already address a few topics and key points that are important to us.

1. First of all, let me emphasize what has been said repeatedly and with all clarity by representatives of the Church in Germany in the past few days. Russia has launched a war against its neighbor Ukraine. The Russian Federation was neither provoked nor threatened to do so. Nothing the leadership in Moscow has put forward to justify the attack is convincing; the clear condemnation of the war by the United Nations General Assembly shows this in an impressive way.
We are confronted with a war of aggression that violates international law, with a disregard for the sovereignty and borders of an internationally recognized state. And with the invasion of the Ukraine, the basic features of the peace order in Europe, as expressed in the CSCE Final Act (1975) and in the Charter of Paris after the end of the Cold War, are also being expressed was grossly disregarded by a great power. The war against Ukraine is therefore a fundamental event that must deeply concern all people in Europe and around the world.
The German bishops unequivocally condemn the actions of the Russian Federation. We stand with the Ukrainian nation, which has the right of self-defense enshrined in international law, but also affirmed by the Church's teaching on peace in the event of an attack. Western countries have decided to support Ukraine in its self-defense, including by supplying arms, while at the same time making it clear that, given the threats it would otherwise pose to peace across Europe and the world, they will not be directly involved in this war will engage. The political dispute about this is of course legitimate and as a church we are not committed to any political concept. But we can provide orientation by stating that we consider the mixture of support for an attacked country and self-restraint for the sake of a higher good to be in principle compatible with the principles of Christian peace teaching.
For us in Europe, there is also the task of defending the so-called "European project". We want to continue to live in liberal democracies, we value human rights and civil liberties, we stand up for the common security of states and exchange between them on the basis of binding and fair rules. All of this was also attacked by the attack on Ukraine. And the confrontation with the forces that have a different Europe in mind will not end when the war in Ukraine is over.
2. Inspired by the example and teaching of Jesus, the Church has a fundamentally critical attitude towards violence. We know that violence and counter-violence create an ominous dynamic. Spirals of violence emerge that are increasingly beyond control, leading to more and more destruction, trauma and hatred that poisons the collective consciousness of entire peoples and makes genuine peace impossible for generations. That is why the Church's perspective is always peace, the "just peace" that only arises and flourishes when the rights of states, peoples and individuals are protected. Even in the middle of a war, this horizon of peace must not disappear from all those involved. The dynamic of total hostility must be avoided. That is why it is so important that Russians from all walks of life, regardless of the risk to themselves, express their opposition to the war. They show: It is not the peoples who have instigated this war. Your friendship is a valuable asset that must be preserved even in difficult times of confrontation.
3. It is concrete people who are ground in the mills of war. Of course, the dead and badly injured soldiers on both sides. But also grieving relatives, a multitude of civilians who - also through forms of struggle contrary to international law, like us

they are experiencing right now - if not their lives, then at least their belongings, losing their livelihood and their future chances are buried. Hundreds of thousands have set out as refugees to escape the violence. We know that we are particularly close to all these victims of the war in these hours. The states and no less the populations throughout Europe are called upon to give help and make it possible. I am impressed by the enormous willingness to show solidarity, which is breaking new ground in the countries bordering Ukraine, especially when it comes to taking in the refugees. And also by the willingness to help that we experience in Germany. The churches in our country are part of this large movement, on the Catholic side not least Caritas International and the Eastern European aid organization Renovabis. Together with the local partners - especially Caritas Ukraine - they ensure that the help, which is provided by so many, reaches the needy in a targeted manner. The wave of solidarity that we are experiencing today must not ebb. It is a very concrete and effective way of showing that we really stand with Ukrainians in need.
4. The majority of people in Ukraine and Russia profess the Christian faith, most of them the Orthodox faith, which is expressed in the form of various churches. Especially in view of the war, it is of the utmost importance that all churches give unanimous witness to the gospel of Jesus Christ. It would be devastating if, in the end, national affiliations and political allegiances outweighed the message bestowed upon Christianity. The fact that the metropolitan of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the Moscow Patriarchate, Archbishop Onufri, spoke out unequivocally against the war deserves special mention. And the same applies to the many voices of Russian Orthodox clergy who do not allow themselves to be harnessed to the propaganda of the Russian government. They are all guided by the gospel of Jesus; it is the gospel of peace!