UKRAINE: Living the faith under shelling

Pilgrims presenting a cake during the scapular celebrations Annual pilgrimage of the Roman Catholic Church to the National Shrine in Berdychiv, July 2022 The scapular celebrations in Berdychiv in 2022 were held under the slogan: "Mother Mary, Queen of Ukraine, pray for our peace". For security reasons because of the war, they had to celebrate with a minimum number of pilgrims. Most people this year participated online. The liturgy was in the underground church, which has been serving as a shelter in this part of the city since the beginning of the war. All pilgrims fit into the underground church (meant for up to 1,000 people). Many bishops from all over Ukraine Ukraine attended, as well at the Apostolic Nuncio and guest from abroad. the Archbishop of Lithuania chaired the celebration UKRAINE / KYIV-ZHYTOMYR-LAT 22/00940 Construction work on the national shrine of the Roman Catholic Church in Berdychiv - 9th Aid

Once again, the National Shrine of Our Lady of Mount Carmel in Berdychiv, Ukraine was a place of pilgrimage on Sunday, July 17.  The threat of bombardments kept most pilgrims away this year, but nonetheless the Latin-rite Ukrainian bishops, accompanied by special guest Archbishop Gintaras Grušas of Vilnius, Lithuania, gathered with some 1,000 faithful in the lower church of the shrine.

The pilgrims on the church courtyard praying and looking up to the displayed icon with the miraculous image of Mary

For a long time Aid to the Church in Need (ACN) has been supporting the renovation of this beautiful basilica, as well as the monastery of the Carmelite Fathers, and a lot of work has already been done on this historical site, founded in the XVII Century, to repair the damage of the Soviet era.

The lower church is a part of a crypt, and the Carmelite Fathers open it for use as a bomb shelter for the local population during the war. In this way, Our Lady continues to protect her children, both spiritually and physically.


Living the faith under shelling

The priest is showing a little image of the icon with the miraculous image of Mary

Father Konstantyn Morozow, a Capuchin brother from Vinnytsia, wrote a short message to ACN. One of his parishioners lives near the city’s central square. On July 14, during a heavy attack on the town, she had been praying the rosary in front of an image of Our Lady, at home. Suddenly, she says, she heard an inner voice asking her to leave the house immediately. A couple of minutes later, missiles hit and damaged the square and surrounding buildings. Her home was heavily damaged.  The image of Our Lady, however, remained untouched.

—Father Jurij Blazejewski



Aid to the Church in Need is a Pontifical Foundation of the Catholic Church and registered in Malta Reg. No. LPF-212 as a Foundation regulated by the second schedule of the Civil Code Chapter (16) of the Laws of Malta.


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