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Ecumenical Patriarch: The invaders of Ukraine seem to want the humiliation of the proud Ukrainian people

The Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew appealed once again for an end to the war in Ukraine, which has already led to the death of thousands of our fellow humans and to hundreds of thousands of others, in his speech at the Church of Saints Theodore of the Vlaga Community on Sunday, March 20, 2022.

Unfortunately, the fellow-orthodox invaders of Ukraine, a sovereign and independent state, seem to seek the utter humiliation of their proud, loyal, and brother Ukrainian people, who are fighting heroically and sacrificing for their freedom.

At the same time, however, those who have chosen the path of war are leading their own young people to ruin. Several thousand Russian soldiers have lost their lives. Its effects are already being experienced by ordinary people on both sides. Ukrainian and Russian mothers separated from their children who went to fight, and several of them are already, unfortunately, mourning their loss.

We reaffirm with all our might: stop this horror! Stop the war now! Enough insanity! How many dead will our land fit in its bowels? How many more tears will water its soil?”

The Ecumenical Patriarch noted that in the face of this unprecedented humanitarian crisis, the Mother Church could not remain inactive and indifferent. He recalled that from the very beginning of the invasion of Ukraine, he and the Ecumenical Patriarchate condemned it unequivocally and called for an immediate end to the war, calling for an uninterrupted prayer “for the peace of the universe”, to which only sincere dialogue leads.

“We mobilized all our communities here to gather food and basic necessities for our suffering brothers in Ukraine, but also to accommodate, to the best of their abilities, families who found refuge in our city.

The response was really moving and we are particularly proud of our Diaspora, which proved once again that the Orthodox Greeks of Constantinople actively assist the neighbor in need.

Earlier, the Patriarch referred to the great Hierarch and Theologian, Saint Gregory Palamas, Archbishop of Thessaloniki, who was honored by our Church and came from Constantinople.

“At a point, which one thinks was written about the current tragic situations that our brothers are experiencing in Ukraine, Saint Gregory said that we must seek peace, not only because we are all brothers as children of the same God the Father, but also because we have the same mother, the Church, and the same piety, whose leader is Christ, the Son of God, who is not only our God but has deigned to be our brother.

And he asked: if without peace with all people it is impossible to see God, how can one hope to see Him in the afterlife who has no peace, nor with those whom he considers his brothers?”