Under the spotlight of the Synod of Bishops of the UGCC is the pastoral care of war refugees

November 18, 2022, 19:14 4

On Friday, November 18, under the chairmanship of the Father and Head of the UGCC, His Beatitude Sviatoslav Ninety-second session of the Synod of Bishops of the UGCC in Ukraine began in Bryukhovychi, Lviv. After the prayer and the introductory synodal formalities, the Synod fathers began to consider the main topic of this session of the Synod of Bishops — “Pastoral care of war refugees.” It was prepared for consideration by the bishops of the UGCC serving in Ukraine by the Pastoral and Migration Department of the UGCC under the leadership of Bishop Stepan Sus.

Under the spotlight of the Synod of Bishops of the UGCC is the pastoral care of war refugees

Today, there are about 6.9 million internally displaced persons in Ukraine and more than 7 million persons who received the status of temporary protection in Europe. For example, as of November 1, 2022, the most significant number of Ukrainian refugees were registered in Poland – 1,469,032 people, Germany – 1,008,935 people, and the Czech Republic – 455,731 people.
During his speech, Bishop Stepan Sus drew attention to the triple experience: labor migration, forced migrants and refugees of the war of 2014-2022, and the knowledge of the Ukrainian Greek-Catholic Church “being close.” He noted the three main principles of the Church's service: “Listening to our history and our everyday life,” “Seeing Christ where he is already waiting for us / analyze-think-pray,” and “Act.”
The bishop also noted the benevolence of the governments and citizens of many countries that accepted Ukrainian refugees and the great work of our priests, religious and public communities, and organizations abroad.
At the same time, the bishop drew attention to the difficulties faced by refugees from Ukraine, particularly in the language issue. 

The bishop also mentioned the titanic work of volunteers: “It is good that volunteers can have their shelter in parish communities and find strength in communion with the Lord to ‘be light and salt,’ but also to inspire others by their example.”

Eventually, Bishop Stepan noted that our Church today faces the challenge of becoming teachers of co-responsibility for our people, for each other, and the Motherland given to us by God. “Our communities abroad are mature, and with their presence, hard work, and good reputation, they have prepared everyone for solidarity with our people. Our communities in Ukraine are also mature and are open to the poorest, accepting them into their homes,” the bishop said.

During this session of the Synod of Bishops of the UGCC in Ukraine, which will last until Saturday, November 19, the bishops will work out several relevant decisions to help the Church best serve Ukrainians who were forced to leave their homes due to Russian aggression.

The UGCC Department for Information

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