Pope calls for prayers as Ukraine marks Independence Day
Following his Angelus address, Pope Francis once again turned his thoughts to “the beloved land of Ukraine,” which celebrates its Independence Day on August 24.
“My thoughts go in a particular way to the beloved land of Ukraine…” the Pope said, “to all its sons and daughters, to their yearning for peace and tranquility, threatened by a situation of tension and conflict that continues unabated, causing so much suffering among the population.”
The Holy Father also appealed for prayer for Ukraine: “Let us entrust the whole nation to the Lord Jesus and to the Madonna, and let us pray together above all for the victims, their families, and all those who suffer.”
Departing from his prepared remarks, Pope Francis spoke of a letter he received from a Ukrainian bishop, recounting the sufferings of the people of Ukraine. “Let us pray together to the Madonna for this beloved land of Ukraine, on its Independence Day,” he said, and lead the faithful in praying the “Hail Mary,” concluding, “Mary, Queen of Peace, pray for us.”