On 100th Day of Russia's War in Ukraine, Archbishop Asks for Prayers saying "...on the front line, on the border between life and death, there are no atheists..."
Dear brothers and sisters in Christ!
Today is Friday, June 3, 2022, and Ukraine is experiencing the 100th day of this great war that Russia has brought to the long-suffering Ukrainian land. Ukrainians have been defending their land for a hundred days. For a hundred days, Ukrainians have been holding back the Russian invasion, which exceeds by all means what we can oppose. However, it was a hundred days of great manifestation of God's presence among us!
Ukraine stands. Ukraine is struggling. And on the 100th day we have good news from the front. In four directions, our troops repulsed the enemy. In the south of the homeland, in the Kherson region, more than 20 settlements have been liberated. Ukraine shows its strength and will to be free and independent. And the Ukrainian people show their steadfastness in that struggle and surprise the world with it.
We believe that the Lord God is the only one we can and should hope for. And today, on this 100th day of the war, is the first day of the Decade of Mission. During the ten days of waiting for the coming of the Holy Spirit, our Church prays for the missionary spirit, prays for being able to share her faith with those who are not yet Christians and did not know Jesus Christ.
God's word of the Holy Gospel, which is the source of Christ's truth for us on this day, tells us about the conversation of Christ and His disciples at the Last Supper. Philip says to Jesus, "Show us the Father and we will have enough." This apostle reveals the deepest desire of every person, which he must realize in his life - to know his Creator, Savior. Christ answers, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. How long have I been with you, Philip, and you do not know Me. Do you not believe that My Father is in Me and I am in the Father? ” That desire to know the source of their existence is rooted in the life quest of each person. It is the task of every disciple of Christ who is called to missionary service in the Church to show the way that is truth and life. When we speak of the way in which we can know the Father, we are preaching Christ. When we talk about the search for truth, the understanding of what happens to a person, even in a brutal war, we are pointing to Christ. When we seek the fullness of life, we want to live even in times of deadly military invasion - we preach Christ.
I invite everyone to walk this path of the Decade of Mission. I invite everyone to pray for our priests, monks, nuns, and laity who are carrying out this missionary work of our Church and preaching Christ to those who do not yet know Him. I ask you for a special prayer for our soldiers. They are for us today special witnesses to the presence of God, because there, on the front line, on the border between life and death, there are no atheists, even unbelievers feel that there is Someone. And who this is - Christians know and point to the living God present among us in His Son Jesus Christ.
Today we pray for all those who do not yet know the true way, who are still seeking God. God help us to fulfill our missionary vocation! God bless Ukraine! God, grant joy to Your children from meeting You! God, You are our Truth, our life, let us live in You, know You, meet You, acquaint the whole world with You.
Glory to Jesus Christ!