His Grace Bishop Veniamin of Southern Bessarabia urged the faithful to support the refugees from Ukraine and to pray for peace.
“We are saddened by what is happening these days in the vicinity of our country and by the trials that have come upon our brothers throughout Ukraine, and we follow with concern the evolution in this country as well as at European level,” the Bishop of Southern Bessarabia said in a message, according to basilica.ro.
“Let us show our brotherly love by expressing solidarity with the Ukrainian people, with the grieving families and with the refugees. Let us remember in our prayers the right-believing and God-fearing leaders, all those who fight for the defense of the motherland and peace in the world in which we live,” the hierarch urged.
Bishop Veniamin called for prayer, but also for solidarity: “It is sad to leave your home and your loved ones because of the war and its consequences. That is why, in fulfilling the law of Christian love, let us support those who have been forced to leave their families and homes.”
The bishop urged the inhabitants of the villages of Palanca, Giurgiulesti and other border points with Ukraine “to guide the refugees, to provide accommodation and food, knowing that this is how we fulfill the Lord’s command.”
His Grace Bishop Veniamin informed that the priests of the diocese will work with the authorities and with all those who want to do good, in order to provide support and assistance to the refugees.
“Many of us remember the hardships that our country went through in 1992, when many lost their loved ones in the Transnistrian war, a war that claimed many lives and caused real tragedy in many families,” bishop Veniamin recalled.
“May God send the angel of peace to protect the sorrowful and the afflicted, the wounded and traumatized by the war. May God grant peace among brothers and in the whole world, because the war is not pleasing to the Lord. It is the expression of selfishness taken to the extreme, a lack of wisdom and indifference to the gift of life offered by God to humans,” His Grace added.
At the same time, the bishop of Southern Bessarabia appealed “to all those who want to support the suffering brothers in any way, to contact the priests in our parishes, so that they can offer their love and support to the homeless and everything necessary for survival.”
The bishop’s message concluded with a short prayer and blessing for those in tribulation:
“O God, bless and protect the victims of war, the refugees, those on the battlefields and multiply Your gift and grace in the lives of all benefactors who stand in solidarity with those who are suffering and helpless in these difficult days, making their lives joyful through love.”
The Diocese of Southern Bessarabia is a component part of the Metropolis of Bessarabia (Romanian Patriarchate). To the south it borders a Romanian historical territory that has access to the Black sea – Bugeac, today part of the Odessa Region, Ukraine.
The Republic of Moldova is also facing a wave of refugees from Ukraine. Actress Angelina Jolie, UN Ambassador for Refugees, recently shared a video on Instagram in which a UN official films the influx of refugees and praises the Moldovan authorities for their efforts.