All-Ukrainian Council of Churches urges Putin to halt war

23 February, 14:09
Interconfessional
All-Ukrainian Council of Churches urges Putin to halt war - фото 1
The heads of churches and religious organizations of Ukraine are summoning Russian President Vladimir Putin "to stop stoking the flames of war." This is stated in an appeal of the All-Ukrainian Council of Churches and Religious Organizations sent to the Russian president on Wednesday, 23 February.

Source: ВРЦіРО

"We authoritatively and unanimously testify that the Ukrainian people are not striving for war and stopping it while it is not too late we consider to be the common obligation of believing people. The commandment of the Almighty, 'Thou shalt not kill,' defines the absolute value of human life and the severe divine punishment for murder. Aggressive war is a great crime against the Almighty," the Ukrainian religious leaders note in an appeal to the head of the aggressor country.

 

The communication notes that the All-Ukrainian Council of Churches and Religious Organizations call the Russian president to a peacemaking dialogue as "the only righteous means for settling mutual difficulties and conflicts," and it is ready to facilitate such a dialogue.

 

The full text of the appeal was posted on the organization's website:

 

To the president of the Russian Federation,

 

V.V. Putin

 

Mr. President!

 

We, the leaders of religious confessions constituting the All-Ukrainian Council of Churches and Religious Organization, which represents sixteen religious associations of various confessions and religions uniting more than 95% of the religious communities in our country—Orthodox, Catholics, protestants, Jews, and Muslims—appeal to you with the request in the name of the Almighty to stop the bonfire of war which is being kindled, because this is within your power.

 

We authoritatively and unanimously testify that the Ukrainian people are not striving for war and stopping it while it is not too late we consider to be the common obligation of believing people.

 

The commandment of the Almighty, 'Thou shalt not kill,' defines the absolute value of human life and the severe divine punishment for murder. Aggressive war is a great crime against the Almighty. For the sake of preserving the lives of Ukrainian and Russian troops and Ukrainian civilians, sincerely believing people must do everything in order to stop bloodshed.

 

The only righteous way to correct mutual difficulties and conflicts is dialogue. We invite you to such a peacemaking dialogue. The All-Ukrainian Council of Churches and Religious Organizations is ready to facilitate such a dialogue and ready to devote all necessary efforts for the search for a path that could lead to a lessening of tension between our countries and facilitate the restoration of peace, staving off the possibility of the development of new widespread conflicts, and maintaining mutual understanding and cooperation between peoples in the whole world.

 

In all of our religious traditions, we greet one another with the wish for peace: "Peace be with you." May this greeting be not only voiced but also the foundation of our walk before God!

 

Today we pray to the Creator of the universe with a special request for wisdom for those who are authorized to make such decisions significant for the whole world and in whose hands lies the fate of humanity. This pertains to you, in the first place, Mr. President of the Russian Federation. This our prayer is full of hope in the benevolence of the Almighty and openness of the heart that receives grace.

 

In the name of the All-Ukrainian Council of Churches and Religious Organizations,

 

With respect,

 

Grigory Komendant,

President of the All-Ukrainian Council of Churches and Religious Organizations,

President of the Ukrainian Bible Society

(tr. by PDS, posted 23 February 2022)