Saturday, March 1, 2014

Religious leaders willing to contribute to dialogue, peace in Ukraine

(Vatican Radio) Catholic, Orthodox and Protestant leaders in 13 countries—Azerbaijan, Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Latvia, Lithuania, Moldova, Russia, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan, Ukraine, and Estonia—have issued a common message of “vital concern” for their people. 

“These days, our prayers and sincere concern are for the people of Ukraine undergoing hard ordeals,” reads the message. “All our communities are praying for those who were killed or injured during the political and social confrontation, as well as for the establishment of lasting peace and mutual understanding among all citizens of the fraternal Ukraine, regardless of their nationality or religion.” 

The religious leaders called upon “all those on whom the future of Ukraine depends to adhere to the principles of freedom of conscience and religion, as well as to the principle of non-interference of state and political forces in the internal life of religious organizations”. 

“Revolutionary methods or any calls to violence, discrimination and seizure of churches cannot promote the unity of Christians or contribute to the establishment of truly partner relationships between religious organizations and the state for the sake of prosperity of the whole society,” their message continues. 

They urged Ukrainians “to exert every effort to avoid provocations and to preserve in their hearts true love for the neighbours, for their human dignity and religious beliefs”.

They concluded by expressing their willingness to promote, through prayer and action, fraternal dialogue and to contribute to the re-establishment of peace in Ukraine.

Text from page,_peace_in_ukraine/en1-777696
of the Vatican Radio website 

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