After talking to Russian Orthodox Patriarch Kirill earlier in the week (and I assume getting nowhere fast, as Krill is adamantly in support of Russia’s evil attack on Ukraine), Pope Francis wrote today in a message to the President of the Council of Bishops’ Conferences of Europe:
What we have experiencing in recent weeks is not what we had hoped for after the difficult health emergency caused by the pandemic, which made us experience a sign of powerlessness and fear, together with the fragile condition of our existence. The tragedy of the war that is taking place in the heart of Europe leaves us astonished; we never thought we would see such scenes again, reminiscent of the great wars of the last century. The heartbreaking cry for help of our Ukrainian brothers and sisters urges us as a community of believers not only to reflect seriously, but to cry with them and to do something for them; to share the anguish of a people whose identity, history and tradition have been wounded. The blood and tears of children, the suffering of women and men who are defending their land or fleeing from bombs rattle our conscience. Once again humanity is threatened by a perverse abuse of power and partisan interests, which condemns defenseless people to suffer all forms of brutal violence.
I thank all of you, dear Brothers in the episcopate, for your prompt and concerted response in coming to the aid of that population, guaranteeing it material aid, welcome and hospitality. Let us not grow weary in this, and let us not cease to invoke peace from God and from men. I therefore urge you to continue to pray that those who hold the fate of nations will leave no stone unturned to stop the war and open a constructive dialogue to put an end to the immense humanitarian tragedy it is causing.
The Knights of Columbus is urging this prayer to be prayed in the coming days. (Note: It’s in preparation for the consecration of Russia to the Immaculate Heart of Mary on the Feast of the Annunciation next week — so it is necessarily Marian.)
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