Clergy of UOC-KP and UGCC Call on Faithful to Honor Victims of Holodomor
On the eve of the 80th anniversary of the 1932-1933 Holodomor, the clergy of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church (UGCC) and the Ukrainian Orthodox Church-Kyivan Patriarchate (UOC-KP) prepared a joint appeal to the faithful. The clergy call on the faithful to honor the victims of the genocide, clean up their memorial sites, and participate in worship.
The appeal was shared today at a press conference in UNIAN by Archbishop Yevstratiy (Zorya) of the UOC-KP; head of the Department of External Relations of the UGCC, Fr. Oleksa Petriv; and Yevhen Sverstyuk, philosopher, dissident, and member of the Public Committee for Commemoration of the Famine-Genocide of 1932-1933 in Ukraine.
“We want this to be a day of commemoration and prayer. Unfortunately, when these people died, very rarely were proper burial rites performed. Therefore, our duty is not only to remember them, but to pray for them,” said Archbishop Yevstratiy.
The archbishop said that in the joint statement the clergy ask the faithful to clean up the victims’ memorial sites, and on November 23 to participate in memorial services and remember the names of all the victims of the Holodomor. He also noted that the UOC-MP is preparing a similar appeal to its faithful.
“The most important thing that we would like to stress is personal involvement. We encourage our faithful, especially those from the villages and areas most affected by the famine, to delegate their representatives to participate in the national mournful events that will take place at the Holodomor Memorial on November 23,” said the hierarch.
Fr. Oleksa Petriv noted that this year’s appeal to mark the anniversary of the Holodomor is special because it is directed primarily to religious communities.
“The appeal is special because for the first time it concerns religious communities. After all, one of the objectives of the Holodomor, as an act of genocide, was to destroy the public consciousness.”
Yevhen Sverstyuk for his part stressed the importance of properly honoring the victims of the Holodomor and preserving historical memory.