(Source: MJ/RISU)

The head of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church (UGCC), Sviatoslav Shevchuk, has said that the key to building a new world after the coronavirus pandemic is the commandment of love, which renews those who practice it and who live by it.

– Ecological crisis to blame for virus

Speaking about the reasons why God allowed COVID-19, the primate of the UGCC admitted that he does not have an answer to that question.

However, he urged everyone to ask God aboutit every day, to listen to God’s voice, and to try to understand what God wants to tell us.

“If we analyse the situation with the virus”, said the head of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church, “we begin to see that we are living in a period of fundamental and global cataclysms and changes”.

“The ecological crisis in the world is the basis for the mutation of this virus.  We don’t know if there will be another pandemic in the world after we overcome the coronavirus”, Shevchuk warned.

“Today we feel a deep shock in nature. There is a feeling that nature is beginning to defend itself against man. That is why it is important for us to rethink our attitude to the environment very seriously”, he said.

He also added: “Perhaps this will also help us today to rethink global relations between different political centres and, finally, to stop fighting each other. To stop investing in weapons”.

– “There may be a famine on a biblical scale”

The Head of the Church drew attention to the fact that to this day Ukraine is at the epicenter of a new geopolitical game and is suffering from war.

He also drew attention to the global consequence of the pandemic – the economic crisis.

“We see that the sanitary crisis is creating an economic crisis. There is a lot of talk about the recession of the world economy, which may be worse than in the early twentieth century.

“We need to build a more harmonious economic system in the world. It is important for us to understand how to distribute our resources equitably”, he said.

“I was very concerned about the statement of one of the UN spokesmen, who spoke about the dangers of world hunger.

“He said that there may be a famine on a biblical scale.

“We must hear not only those suffering from coronavirus, but also those who suffer from the unfair distribution of resources in the world”, stressed the Head of the UGCC.

– Ukrainian Greek Catholic, Roman Catholic Bishops condemn “shameful” surrogate motherhood, demand ban

In the meantime in Ukraine, a video posted on the page of BioTexCom clinic from Venezia Hotel in Kyiv – which shows 46 newborn babies crying on beds, deprived of parental warmth and treated as a product for which there was no buyer – prompted the bishops of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic and Roman Catholic Churches to urgently demand of authorities that they ban the practice of surrogacy.

“The coronavirus pandemic reveals many pathologies in our modern public life. One of them is the phenomenon of surrogacy, where persons are treated as a commodity that can be ordered, manufactured and sold”, the bishops denounced in a May 14 open letter.

Decrying that surrogacy is “unfortunately” permitted under current Ukrainian legislation, the bishops said that “such a trampling of human dignity urges us to appeal to the Ukrainian authorities at all levels to condemn and ban this shameful phenomenon”.

According to the bishops, the gap in Ukrainian legislation allowing for surrogacy “significantly destroys European integration efforts and discredits our country in the eyes of European society”.

The Greek Catholic and Roman Catholic bishops said they stood “in solidarity” with the call of the Ukrainian Parliament’s Commissioner for Human Rights to prohibit both altruistic and commercial surrogacy and to ban international child trafficking.

The bishops also demanded that state authorities “finally pay attention to family policy in Ukraine” and set up an appropriate state body “that would take care of Ukrainian families and ensure that Ukrainian mothers do not have to trade their bodies and children… for their own and their families’ survival”.

The open letter was signed by Major Archbishop Shevchuk on behalf of the Synod of Bishops of the Kyiv-Galician Supreme Archbishopric of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church, and by Archbishop Mieczyslaw Mokrzycki, Metropolitan of Lviv, on behalf of the Conference of Bishops of the Roman Catholic Church in Ukraine.

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