Kharkiv is Ukraine’s second largest city and – right now – one of the worst hit in the war. Priests and volunteers there
have become accustomed to daily sorting of food, clothing, hygiene products, and other essentials for the thousands
of people who come to the cathedral for aid, from all over the city. Most of these people are elderly, sick and poor people who have stayed behind.
“Many are asking how they will be able to survive, given the fact that prices have risen so drastically and the increasing difficulty in buying water, gas or electricity,” explains Magda Kaczmarek, ACN Head of Projects for
Ukraine. Bishop Vasylij Tuchapets of the Catholic Greek Diocese of Kharkiv told ACN that the most pressing need at the moment is to ensure that people can keep warm in the harsh winter weather. Food, warm items and medicine are still needed, the latter being a priority, as the cold weather is usually accompanied by seasonal diseases.
“We still need help for people and this need will continue for a long time, because people now have no work
and no income, so we must provide at least basic things,” says Bishop Vasylij. ACN was the first charity Mgr Vasylij
Tuchapets visited after being named Bishop of Kharkiv in 2014. Over the years, the diocese and ACN have set
up a number of projects, including the ongoing construction of the cathedral and other churches, parish centres and
infrastructure, support for priests and sisters, catechism projects and work with children and youth, that are now bearing fruit.
Speaking to all ACN benefactors, Bishop Vasylij said: “Thank you for your support and cooperation. This is how we spread the love of God in east Ukraine, where it was forbidden for almost 80 years of communism. Every one of our Priests celebrates Mass at least once a month for the intentions of our benefactors. I thank you for this cooperation and hope that it will continue. May the Lord bless you for your generosity, which is so important for the Church”