A monastery in Ukraine A monastery in Ukraine 

Monasteries in Ukraine receive vital support to aid IDP’s

Six monasteries of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church sheltering hundreds of IDPs in western Ukraine are to receive financial support, thanks to the Catholic charity, Aid to the Church in Need.

By Vatican News staff reporter

Since the conflict in Ukraine began, Ukrainian Greek Catholic Basilian monks have been opening their doors to hundreds of people who have fled shelling and bombardments.

Vital aid

The Basilian Order of St Josaphat, which has six monasteries, has now been given a financial lifeline of £57,000 from the charity Aid to the Church in Need (ACN) as they continue to shelter those who are suffering as a result of this war.

The aid will go a long way to helping the monks meet the burden of rising electricity and water costs, as well as medicine for the sick.

The human cost of war

The Basilian’s provincial house in Briukhovychi, near Lviv in western Ukraine, is caring for 150 women and children.

“It is very difficult. Our men stayed to fight, and we left, I left with four children,” says one woman who has been given accommodation at the monastery.

Speaking to ACN, she describes her fear, and says she fled Kyiv in order to protect her children.

Her youngest is just two months old.

 “We try to keep her as safe as we can, at least for now,” she says.

“We had to leave our husbands and I came with my daughter-in-law, her baby and two teenagers. This is how it is – we never expected it.”

Monasteries of hope

The IDP’s who have arrived at the monastery are being allowed to stay for as long as they need. They are not looking to flee the country but just want to return home when it is safe to do so.

IDP stories

Halyna is currently receiving care at the Basilian’s Monastery of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross in Buchach.

She fled Makariv, near Kyiv when Russian shelling became too dangerous.

“We stayed for as long as we could, but in the end we had to leave because the bombing became too intense. Now everything is destroyed,” she says.

“We are very grateful to the monks who took us in, they have been very welcoming. I am not exaggerating when I say we are very comfortable here. We hope that the war will end soon, so we can go back home. If, that is, there is a home to go back to.”

ACN support

This additional funding by Aid to the Church in Need comes on the heels of more than £1 million which is supporting priests and religious across Ukraine helping those suffering because of the war.

31 March 2022, 14:54