Representatives of various Christian traditions and military prayed together for Church unity and peace in Ukraine

On January 21, at the Chapel of the Ukrainian Catholic University was held an ecumenical prayer for Christian unity and peace in Ukraine. The Institute of Ecumenical Studies has been traditionally inviting representatives of different Christian denominations to pray together during the World Week of Prayers for Christian Unity.

This year's prayer was attended by Father Vasyl Lutsyshyn, Rector of the Lviv Theological Seminary UAOC; Father Tadeos Gevorgian, Provost of the Armenian Apostolic Church’s Cathedral; Father Victor Kaida, Priest at the Pokrova church and Chief Editor of Radio "City of the Lion" (UOC-KP); Father Volodymyr Hotsaniuk, Priest at the church of Sts. Vasyl the Great and Olexiy Zarytsky (Riasne 1); Father Roman Fihas, Employee at the Institute of Ecumenical Studies and DLMPES’ Coordinator; Deacon Dmytro Romanko (UGCC). Also, military personnel and ATO members together with the chaplain of the Army Academy named after Hetman Sahaidachny, Father-deacon Myron Horbov.

The ecumenical prayer was led by Archbishop Borys (Kharko), Bishop of Kherson and Mykolaiv, who manages Taurian Diocese UAOC.

"In order to gain unity, peace must be achieved in our soul, it is necessary that each of communicators, each of those involved in dialogue, peaced with God-Creator and thus – found the truth. With a state of soul one may find peace with God, and then possibly build social peace. Let these common prayers for unity and peace strengthen our practical everyday competitions in the pursuit of truth, the return of peace to the Ukrainian land, in creating unity in our souls, in our communities, in our country and in the world " – Bishop Borys wished to all those present.

A special moment during the common prayer was lighting candles. According to Father Roman Fihas, though everyone prayed with a separate candle, but the fire was common for all.

Father Tadeos Gevorgian, Provost of the Armenian Apostolic Church's Cathedral, stressed that, first of all, union – is not the union of the Church leaders, "souls unite in the first place. In the end Christ will unite us. As Christians we must remember that faith unites us."

Priest at the Pokrova church UOC-KP Father Victor Kaida, in his turn, noted the unity of soldiers during the war in eastern Ukraine, belonging to various denominations, they pray and take the Eucharist together, and thanked for the opportunity to pray together in the rear.

Ecumenical prayer was accompanied by songs in Taizé spirit with music accompaniment. Finally, Nativity Play by the students of the Ukrainian Catholic University showed an incredibly original theatrical Christmas performance in a modern format. With this play the UCU’s students recently visited our soldiers in the ATO area.

Photos by Valentyna Yevtushok