Bishops of the UGCC Called faithful to Take Part in Second Round of Presidential Elections and to Pray for God’s Blessing
KYIV — The Synod of Bishops of the Kyiv-Halych Major Archbishopric of the UGCC has issued an address to the faithful of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church and to the people of good will regarding the second round of the presidential elections of Ukraine. In this document the bishops point out the responsibility of every Ukrainian to express their opinion in the presidential elections and the necessity to pray to the Lord. “Our nation has to understand that the possibility to choose freely, without external compulsion, a leader of the state is a great privilege for us. At the same time this freedom obliges us to perform a holy civic duty,” reads the address which is published on the official web page of the UGCC.
In accordance to the document, the responsibility that comes with the elections has different aspects. First of all, it consists of using the possibility to choose the country's leader. “To neglect this possibility, not to vote, is not a wise decision, but rather the other way around. To take advantage of the right to choose means to show civic maturity and responsibility. On the contrary, not to vote means to avoid responsibility,” write the authors of the address.
Secondly, the bishops of the UGCC bring the attention of public to the fact that the electors are personally responsible for being able to take advantage of their right. “Everybody should make sure that he is properly registered and that nothing could prevent him from executing this civic duty,” states the address.
The other aspects of responsibility in regards to elections, in the opinion of the Synod of Bishops, is an obligation “to use honestly the possibility to choose” and the duty “to get to know the candidates and make a choice, one that is clever, sound, and not emotional or opportune.”
The second part of address is devoted to the appeal to prayer. “What does it mean to pray in the circumstances of the elections?” ask the bishops. “It is means, first and foremost, to insure oneself to God, one’s people, and the state... He as the good Father, Creator of the Universe, knows best what is beneficial for us. Therefore, prayer, to which we call you, consists in giving oneself to the paternal hands of our Creator and Benefactor.”
The second element which cannot be forgotten is that under any circumstance we have to consciously execute the Divine Will, the Lord’s law. “Our conduct in this time and in these circumstances has to respond in every way in to the requirements of God’s law: respect to others, absolute honesty and respect of the rights of others. Sincere prayer obligates us to be Christians not in words, but in deeds,” summarize the bishops of the UGCC.
The address on the occasion of the second round of the presidential elections of Ukraine is to be read by pastors at masses on Sunday, January 31 and on February 7, 2010.