Bishop Victor (Kotsaba): Real power of the nation lies in unity
Real unity can only be achieved if all, without exception, consciously strive for it, the UOC hierarch emphasized.
The real power of the people is in unity is, and it is unity that can give the Ukrainians a powerful state. The Head of the Representation of the UOC to European International Organizations, the vicar of the Kyiv Metropolis, Bishop Victor (Kotsaba) of Baryshevka, said this in a video message posted on the YouTube channel “Thoughts Aloud”.
According to the hierarch, the almost daily bleak events of our time prompt us to reflect on what we all lack, namely, on unity.
“I’ll start with the question which is better – coffee with or without sugar, fried or boiled potatoes, Conservatives or Democrats, autumn or spring,” said the clergyman. “Each person has a personal answer to such questions, and it’s natural only until our principles become more important than our neighbors and relations with them. It’s truly a disaster when a husband and wife vote for different candidates, because then the victory of one of them in the elections easily turns into an endless squabble or even a complete breakup.”
The hierarch reiterated that unity makes us stronger both in the realm of the family and in the realm of the state.
“Ukraine could have its own statehood in the 17th century, if it hadn’t been for the deep divisions among the then people into supporters and opponents of numerous hetmans and various political vectors,” he noted. “Although at the beginning of the liberation wars of Bohdan Khmelnytsky, the Cossacks, who had united around Orthodoxy, rebuffed the mighty Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth. <...> I still recall from the school time the words of the great Kyiv Prince Yaroslav the Wise, who commanded his children: ‘have love among you, because you are all brothers from the same father and mother; if you live in love with each other, God will be with you and subjugate your enemies’. By the way, following the advice of Yaroslav, his grandson, also the noble Prince Vladimir Monomakh, integrated forces of Kievan Rus and defeated the warlike steppes and nomads, bringing peace and prosperity for many years to the country.”
According to Bishop Victor, it is unity that can give Ukrainians a “powerful state capable of ensuring fair trial, protecting the right to life and freedom of opinion and religion by joining various ethnic groups into a single Ukrainian community. True, the state also needs from us the ability to live in good faith, the desire to create and develop, the ability to reckon with the rights and needs of others, taming our own egoism.”
“In order to achieve true unity in spite of the existing disagreements in traditions and preferences, all of us, without exception, must consciously strive for it, remembering the Gospel words of Christ: every state divided in itself will be empty, and every city or house divided in itself will not stand, he said. - And it’s worth remembering that when some communities of the first Christians began to call themselves “Peter and Paul”, the apostles themselves proclaimed: We are all Christ, regardless of who baptized us, regardless of the color of our skin, national origin or political convictions. "
Vladyka emphasized that when people unite around God and His Truth, supreme humanity destroys all the arisen national and cultural barricades, promoting reconciliation.
“So we will try daily to achieve unity, first in the family, then in the collective and society, and then in the state. After all, the real power of the nation lies in unity. For this end, we will hold tightly in our hands the right hand of the Risen Christ, who will not cease to bless us, and we will develop the earthly fatherland according to the laws of the Heavenly Fatherland, bearing in mind that the law of love is the greatest of these laws, ”Bishop Victor asserted.
As reported by the UOJ, Bishop Victor (Kotsaba) said earlier that people who do not have their own religious beliefs or spiritual principles much easier succumb to manipulations.