286th day of the war in Ukraine… The reality of the tragic loss of human life, destruction of property and forced evacuation from Ukraine have presented new challenges to the ministry of the Church among the people of Ukraine.
Thousands of miles away from Ukraine, the clergy and faithful of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the USA responded decisively to the urgent Humanitarian Disaster caused by the war. Th parish communities from across the country began to collect and ship to Ukraine medical and logistical supplies, financial aid, etc.
With the blessing of His Eminence Metropolitan Antony, the Spiritual Center of the UOC of the USA, acting through the ministry of the Consistory offices of the Church, actively engaged in providing medical and food supplies to the devasted areas of the Central, Eastern and Southern parts of Ukraine. Most recently, Odessa, Mykolaiv, Kherson, Donetsk, Mariupol and Kyiv regions received shipments of food and medicine, as well as over 200 tons of potable water and logistical supplies for the residents of the destroyed areas.
Archbishop Daniel daily receives updates from the volunteers in Ukraine and together with Protodeacon Ihor Mahlay, the director of the Consistory Office of Christian Charity and Very Rev. Fr. Stephen Hutnick, treasurer of the UOC of the USA, make the most necessary decisions that impact the delivery and distribution of the Humanitarian Aid in Ukraine.
20 kilometers from the front line, the soldiers and residents of Bahmut received the logistical supplies of several drones that provide the life-saving information about the movements of the Russian forces that attack peaceful villages and towns of the area.
Portable stoves and heaters have been purchased and delivered to the members of the armed forces in Ukraine, serving on the front lines of Donetsk region.
The town of Kostyantynivka, another 20 kilometers away from Bahmut, continues to receive the aid from the UOC of the USA in order to feed the refugees, pregnant women, children, elderly, people with the disabilities. Even when the lights are out, due to the shortage of electricity and heating – we continue to bring Light into the lives of people!
In Dnipro region, the Church is able to distribute food and medical supplies to the refugees from Mariupol and surrounding areas. Portable heaters and blankets, sweat treat for children and diapers for babies continue to be purchased and delivered through the cooperation of the UOC of the USA with His Eminence Metropolitan Serhiy of Donetsk Eparchy of the Orthodox Church of Ukraine.
The residents of the most recently liberated city of Kherson also received a touch of love from the efforts of the Humanitarian Aid of the UOC of the USA. Working closely with the volunteers from Odessa, tons of potable water, food and toys for children were distributed in various residential areas of the city.
The residents of the city of Mykolaiv, most recently attacked area of Southern Ukraine, received the delivery of the most basic and necessary life-saving water. Dozens of young volunteers in Odessa, assisted the representatives of the UOC of the USA in packing the trucks with the containers and water, as they were driven to the residents of Mykolaiv.
Thanks to the generous donations of the faithful of the UOC of USA, the Church continues to provide necessary care to those in need, to those who are laying down their lives for their neighbors, and to all the innocents who are suffering wrongly from Russian aggression. While providing material goods, the Church also continues to pray fervently for the safety of the civilians and defenders, and a speedy cessation of the hostility, allowing the people of Ukraine to live in peace and prosperity.
Please, visit our web site for the most recent updates on our humanitarian efforts and CONTINUE TO SUPPORT US IN OUR MISSION TO HELP THE PEOPLE AND NATION OF UKRAINE!
Photos by Metroppolitan Serhiy of Donetsk (OCU); Very Rev. Fr. Kostyantyn Kuznetson and Lydia