It’s heart-wrenching to read about the immense suffering and hardships that the innocent civilians of Ukraine are enduring due to the ongoing conflict. The efforts of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the USA to provide aid and support to these beleaguered people are truly commendable. Their commitment to sending essential supplies and school materials despite the challenging circumstances is a beacon of hope in such dire times.
The seasons change, and with each passing day the innocent civilians of Ukraine anticipate and pray for an end to the horrors of war inflicted upon them by the Russian Federation. 1 year, 5 months, 2 weeks, and 6 days they have lived in fear, suffered unthinkable hardships, been terrorized, starved, flooded, shot, raped, murdered, and unceremoniously buried in unmarked graves. Those who have thus far survived the unprovoked Russian invasion even though they find themselves in great need, hungry and tired, they are resolute and refuse to give up. While the men and women, mothers, fathers, sisters, and brothers fight on the front lines, those they defend continue to pray for peace, safety, victory, and survival of not just themselves, but, of Ukrainian identity, a millennia-old heritage bestowed to them as a legacy from their ancestors, and they struggle to continue living in faith, in the face of evil. It would be easy to just give up, but surrender is not in the Ukrainian character. Instead, they resolutely defy the odds, continue to plant, and harvest, continue to create art, to educate their children, to tend to their flocks, to practice their traditions, and to inspire the world, as the Ukrainian forces defend not only Ukraine, but all of Europe.