Pope Francis asked that Ash Wednesday, 2 March, should be a day of particular prayer and fasting for peace in Ukraine. Members try to pray at 8pm in their country for SD-Europe - perhaps at this time, we make a great effort to pray in solidarity with our family in Eastern Europe for peace - and for those directly affected by the invasion of Ukraine.
Here is a prayer that we can use, composed by Pope Francis:
Lord God of peace, hear our prayer!
We have tried so many times and over so many years to resolve our conflicts by our own powers and by the force of our arms. How many moments of hostility and darkness have we experienced; how much blood has been shed; how many lives have been shattered; how many hopes have been buried… But our efforts have been in vain.
Now, Lord, come to our aid! Grant us peace, teach us peace; guide our steps in the way of peace. Open our eyes and our hearts, and give us the courage to say: "Never again war!"; "With war everything is lost". Instill in our hearts the courage to take concrete steps to achieve peace.
Lord, God of Abraham, God of the Prophets, God of Love, you created us and you call us to live as brothers and sisters. Give us the strength daily to be instruments of peace; enable us to see everyone who crosses our path as our brother or sister. Make us sensitive to the plea of our citizens who entreat us to turn our weapons of war into implements of peace, our trepidation into confident trust, and our quarreling into forgiveness.
Keep alive within us the flame of hope, so that with patience and perseverance we may opt for dialogue and reconciliation. In this way may peace triumph at last, and may the words "division", "hatred" and "war" be banished from the heart of every man and woman. Lord, defuse the violence of our tongues and our hands. Renew our hearts and minds, so that the word which always brings us together will be "brother", and our way of life will always be that of: Shalom, Peace, Salaam!
You may also find these prayers of help. If you have other prayers, please send them to email@example.com and they can be added to our list.
Liturgy for Ukraine - a simple prayer service
Kyrie Eleyson- Ukrainian Orthodox Chant of the XV Century by Kyiv Chamber Choir (sacred choral music)
Prayer for Peace / Prière pour la Paix - 25.02.2022 from The Taize Community
Taizé - Gospodi Pomiluj (Ukrainian)
Russian/Ukrainian Kyrie (chant with verses)