Sunday, March 27, 2022

Pontifical Statement on Humanitarian Crisis

By Jean DuBois

FIRENZE-NUOVA ROMA 27 March 2022 (NRom)

The Florentine-Roman Papa is deeply concerned by the worsening humanitarian crisis in Ukraine. According to the United Nations, ongoing fighting in Ukraine has displaced a large number of people, cut off food, water, sanitation, and medical supplies to millions of people, prompting more than three million others to flee their homes and villages, abandoning their crops and livelihoods. Most of the displaced persons are women and children. If this reaches this UN estimates of up to seven million internally displaced persons and as many as seven million refugees, it would be the largest war-related mass migration since the Balkan Wars of the 1990s, potentially involving up to 20 million people. Meanwhile, the disruption of agriculture in the breadbasket of Europe is also disturbing, with the potential to impact millions of people around the world. 

In response to this ongoing global situation, Papa Rutherford I, Prince of the Romans and Supreme Pontiff of the Anglican Rite of the Catholic Church released the following Apostolic Letter.

Text of the Apostolic Letter "The Humanitarian Situation in Ukraine."

A deteriorating humanitarian situation in Ukraine has displaced millions of people, leaving them completely reliant on humanitarian assistance offered by other nations and the selfless service of various benevolent organisations. Clearly these circumstances involve complex geopolitical issues. It is made worse by responses fueled by emotions such as fear and hate. Faith in Christ has widely been abandoned and replaced with national pride and special interests. Yet, the issues of human rights and human dignity, regardless of national origin or political affiliation remain of paramount importance. We applaud all who have taken steps to ensure proper humanitarian assistance can be delivered.

Insecurity of the Ukrainian civilian population has been magnified by fallout from the COVID-19 pandemic has made this crisis more complex than others preceding it. World leaders and individuals must both speak soberly and act intelligently, rather than aggravating the situation. Indeed, leaders and representatives of all the world's civil states are pastorally admonished against inflammatory rhetoric that can only serve to inflame passions, prolong conflict, and worsen the situation overall – especially for the civilian population.

Reasonable and legitimate cooperation is essential. We must focus on a brighter, more peaceful future. Indeed, nation-building takes years to achieve. Sadness, hatred, and vitriol around the world must also be conquered if there is to be enduring peace.

We again express our gratitude to all people, regardless of national origin, that are now demonstrating Christian ideals by helping their fellow human beings and by upholding human rights for all people.

The Book of Ecclesiastes tell us: "Tempus belli, et tempus pacis." There is a time for war and a time for peace. Indeed, there is a time for everything. Let us pray for a just end to the present conflict, that all may seek to do the will of God. Pious prayer is critical for a return to a more peaceful, tolerant world built upon Christian brotherhood.