UKRAINIAN ORTHODOX CHURCH OF THE USA
CONSISTORY OFFICE OF PUBLIC RELATIONS
Prayer Service for Peace in Ukraine in Philadelphia, PA
A Special Prayer Service for Peace in Ukraine was held Sunday, March 16 at 5 pm in the Ukrainian Catholic Cathedral in Philadelphia, PA.
His Eminence Metropolitan Antony, the Prime Hierarch of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the USA concelebrated the Prayer Service with Archbishop Stefan Soroka, of the Ukrainian Catholic Archeparchy (Archdiocese) of Philadelphia, and Metropolitan of the Ukrainian Catholic Church in the United States, Archbishop Charles J. Chaput, O.F.M. Cap. of the Latin Catholic Archdiocese of Philadelphia.
The current crisis in Ukraine is of particular concern, not only to the over 1 million Americans who have Ukrainian heritage of which 280,000 were born in Ukraine, but locally to the almost 200,000 Ukrainian-Americans who live in the greater Philadelphia Metropolitan area.
In his statement, Archbishop Soroka stated, “As people of faith, it is times as these, when we raise our voices in prayer to Almighty God. May the Lord strengthen His people with courage and fortitude as they endure the suffering and mourn the loss of their loved ones. May He strengthen His people in Ukraine and guide them to a peaceful resolution of this conflict and open their minds to dialogue and reconciliation. May they end the divisive violence and restore tranquility to their nation.”
Metropolitan Antony, addressing the clergy and faithful gathered at the cathedral stated: “We are praying here today before the Mother of God for a people, for a nation that over the centuries has lived through cataclysm and cataclysm, after cataclysm… By the grace of God and the protection of His Holy Mother, Ukraine, as a nation and a people exists. Ukraine exits as an independent nation…
Today we pray, as we always have, for her Holy Protection and ask for her intercession before her beloved Son Jesus Christ. I call upon you all to pray for our people… Dedicate your prayers during this holy Lenten Season to the Mother of God asking her to intercede once again; to hold up that veil of protection over all of our people.
…Pray for our people. Pray for those who have the audacity to stand up and say, we have rights, there is dignity in humanity, there is a sanctity of life, that we will die for in order to preserve the future for our children.
He concluded by saying, “It’s in our power, the power of our prayers and the power of our faith to help Ukraine come through these difficult moments.”