Priests of Russian Orthodox Church call for an end to the war in Ukraine

Holy Trinity Sergius Lavra (Russia). Photo: Taisiya Lazarenko

Clerics of the Russian Orthodox Church appeal to politicians for a ceasefire.

Priests and deacons of the Russian Orthodox Church issued a statement calling for an end to the war.

“We send this appeal after Sunday about the Last Judgment and on the eve of Forgiveness Sunday. The Last Judgment awaits every person. No earthly authority, no doctors, no guards will protect from this judgment. Concerned about the salvation of every person who considers himself a child of the Russian Orthodox Church, we do not want a person to appear at this judgment, bearing the heavy burden of mother's curses. We remind you that the Blood of Christ, shed by the Savior for the life of the world, will be reveived in the Sacrament of Communion by those people who give murderous orders not into life, but into eternal torment,” the statement says.

Clerics report that they deplore the trial their brothers and sisters were undeservedly subjected to in Ukraine and remind that the life of every person is a priceless and unique gift of God. Priests and deacons of the Russian Orthodox Church wish the return of all soldiers – both Russian and Ukrainian – to their homes and families safe and sound.

“We bitterly think about the abyss that our children and grandchildren in Russia and Ukraine will have to overcome in order to start making friends with each other, respect and love each other again.

We respect the God-given freedom of a person, and we believe that the people of Ukraine should make their choice on their own, not at gunpoint, without pressure from the West or East,” the clergy who signed the statement say.

The appeal notes that the gates of paradise are opened to anyone, even a seriously sinned person, if he asks for forgiveness from those whom he humiliated, insulted, despised, or from those who were killed by his hands or by his order. There is no other way but forgiveness and mutual reconciliation,” the clergy of the Russian Orthodox Church emphasize.

“’What have you done? Listen! Your brother’s blood cries out to me from the ground. Now you are under a curse and driven from the ground, which opened its mouth to receive your brother’s blood from your hand’, God said to Cain, who envied his younger brother. Woe to every person who realizes that these words are addressed to him personally,” the statement says.

The clergy of the Russian Orthodox Church, who signed the statement, declare that no non-violent call for peace and an end to the war should be forcibly suppressed and considered as a violation of the law, for such is the divine commandment: "Blessed are the peacemakers."

“We call on all warring parties to dialogue, because there is no other alternative to violence. Only the ability to hear the other can give hope for a way out of the abyss into which our countries were thrown in just a few days. Let yourself and all of us enter Great Lent in the spirit of faith, hope and love.

Stop the war,” the clergy of the Russian Orthodox Church concluded their appeal with these words.

Earlier, the UOJ reported that, according to His Beatitude Metropolitan Onuphry, there is no justification for a war between fraternal peoples.

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