A Ukrainian priest and a chaplain prayed in the Senate for lawmakers to make decisions "corresponding to God's Will"
This was reported by the Voice of America.
Father Volodymyr Sheliak, the pastor of St. Andrew's Church in the outskirts of Washington and the chaplain of the National Guard's readiness center of the US Armed Forces, prayed for the Lord to guide the work of American senators, who have "an impact on the lives of millions of people both in this country and around the world."
"We are grateful for the principles of freedom, justice, and democracy that the United States represents. We acknowledge the role of this nation as a beacon of hope and strength for good in the world. We lift our prayers for the senators and all those who work in this honorable Chamber. Grant them understanding to make decisions that align with Your Divine Will," the Ukrainian priest prayed while addressing the Senate in the capacity of a military chaplain.
Without the opportunity to directly mention Ukraine to comply with the rule set for guests, Father Volodymyr prayed "for peace and dignity for all people."
"We also pray for a continuous pursuit of peace, freedom, and dignity for all people. We thank you for the compassion and solidarity shown by this nation," Father Volodymyr expressed.
The tradition of starting the day with a prayer exists in both chambers of the American Congress. Usually, chaplains of the Congress deliver these prayers, but sometimes they invite guests and grant them the honor to initiate the lawmakers' work with a prayer.
Since the full-scale invasion of Russia into Ukraine, at least once a week, American chaplains in Congress mention Ukraine in their prayers.
Chris Van Hollen, a Democratic senator from Maryland, where both the church and the military base where Father Volodymyr serves are located, expressed his pleasure in welcoming the priest and chaplain into the Senate.
"Father Sheliak is well-known in the Ukrainian-American community here in Maryland, and he shares my strong commitment to ensuring the Ukrainian people have the resources they need to fight Putin's brutal aggression," the senator, who invited the Ukrainian priest, wrote in a Facebook post.
"I hope my colleagues in the Senate took his important words in this morning's prayer to heart — about the role that the United States can and should play as a 'beacon of hope and strength for good in the world,' and about how we must continue to support the 'pursuit of peace, freedom, and dignity for all people,'" Senator Van Hollen said. "His words should inspire all of us as we fight for critical priorities in the coming days, including providing critical assistance to the people of Ukraine."