His Beatitude Metropolitan Onuphry of Kiev and All Ukraine has issued another appeal to the Ukrainian people and soldiers, and to Russian President Vladimir Putin, calling for increased prayer and an end to the “fratricidal war.”
Dear brothers and sisters! The faithful of our Ukrainian Orthodox Church!
As the primate of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church, I appeal to you and to all citizens of Ukraine. A disaster has occurred. Unfortunately, Russia has launched military actions against Ukraine, and at this fateful time I urge you not to panic, to be courageous, and to show love for your homeland and for each other. I call you, above all, to intensified penitential prayer for Ukraine, for our army, and our people, and I entreat you to lay aside mutual strife and misunderstandings and unite in love for God and our motherland.
At this tragic time, we express our fervent love and support to our soldiers standing guard and protecting and defending our land and our people. May God bless and keep them!
Defending the sovereignty and integrity of Ukraine, we appeal to the President of Russia and ask him to immediately stop the fratricidal war. The Ukrainian and Russian peoples came out of the Dnieper Baptismal font, and the war between these peoples is a repetition of the sin of Cain, who killed his own brother out of envy. Such a war has no justification either from God or from people.
I call everyone to common sense, which teaches us to solve our earthly problems in mutual dialogue and mutual understanding, and I sincerely hope that God will forgive us our sins and that God’s peace will reign on our land and throughout the world!
His Beatitude made an earlier appeal on Tuesday for the prevention of war, as did the All-Ukrainian Council of Churches.