With prayers for unity: Ecumenical Week in Kyiv comes to an end
On Sunday, January 24, the traditional Ecumenical Week completed in Kyiv with a prayer for the unity of all Christians. The first prayer in Kyiv was performed by the Greek Catholic Church of St. Basil the Great. Representatives of all three Orthodox Churches and Patriarch Sviatoslav united un prayer. Apostolic Nuncio of Ukraine Archbishop Claudio Gugerotti was also taking part in the prayer. There were Lutherans and Christians of Evangelical Faith.
“The Holy Gospel does not lose its relevance, as we want to be the people of God and to be called his children. That is why we should saturate our spirit through faith, hope and love. Let us pray to have love for one another, for our country and our army. Let us pray for the future generation, to be an example of Christian life. May the Lord unite us so that there was one flock and one pastor,” Archbishop Volodymyr of Zhytomyr (UAOC) said in his opening remarks while conveying congratulations from Metropolitan Makariy, who prayed in Lviv for ecumenical unity.
At the end of the prayer, representatives of different Christian denominations read a short prayer, the main motives of which were the unity between people, state unity and hope for society.
Head of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church Patriarch Sviatoslav (Shevchuk) thanked all those who came to church, pointing out the large number of young people and wounded fighters, who also found a nerve to join the prayer: “We see our desire unity turn into prayer. So let us pray, work and forgive one another. And let us unite for a common future in love.”
Kyivite Oksana, who also joined the prayer, is confident in the future unity of Christians in Ukraine: “Ecumenism is between those who profess it. For further unification, we certainly need the good will of the leaders of churches, patience, love and mutual respect. But it will be a very long process.”
Parishioner Taras believes that such common prayer is already a major step towards the introduction of ecumenism. “Every such prayer is a serious step, especially if attended by the parishioners of the UOC (MP). Everything big starts with small things. So I am glad that someone is making these small steps to crash this rock,” he said.
This year was assigned by the Catholic Church as the "Year of Divine Mercy." In this same vein the main theme of the Ecumenical Week: "All we are called to proclaim the majestic works of the Lord" (1 Peter 2: 9) is considered.