Pope Francis, who criticized the war in Ukraine from the start and indirectly accused Russia of starting it when he said it was a war of “some potentate”, this time annoyed the Ukrainian side conflict in his criticism. During the Good Friday procession, the sisters carried the cross together. One from Ukraine and the other from Russia. After criticism from the Ukrainian side, the Vatican shortened the text the nurses were supposed to read, but did not exclude them from the procession. Inform for example Policy.
Easter is one of the most important religious holidays of the year. Regarding them, however, the pope sent a strong signal to the political news. During the evening procession, two nurses carried a large cross, recalling the crucifixion of Jesus Christ. Irina from Ukraine and her friend Albin from Russia.
Andrij Juraš, the Ukrainian ambassador to the Vatican, objected to this symbolic gesture. “We are now trying to explain the complications and possible consequences of such a measure,” Andrij Juraš said on Twitter.
The Archbishop of kyiv of the Greek Catholic Church, Sviatoslav Shevchuk, reacted even stronger. “The idea is inappropriate and unclear, it does not take into account the context of Russian aggression against Ukraine,” the archbishop said. Regarding the expected attack in the east of the country, he even described as offensive the gesture and the planned presentation of the call for a solution to the conflict.
The papal nuncio in Kyiv, Visvaldas Kulbokas, said he had communicated with the Ukrainian side about the idea. However, he defended the step saying that before the cross everyone, both attacker and defender, were children of God. However, the Vatican partially backed down from this criticism.
Nurses instead of a challenge, which diplomats say should be about two hundred words, only gave a lesson small challenge. “In the face of death, silence is the strongest word. Let us all dedicate ourselves to silent prayer and pray in our hearts for world peace,” the nurses finally said. A few minutes of silence followed, filling the originally scheduled times for the longer statement. At the end of the procession, Pope Francis himself prayed. “Allow the enemies to shake hands so they can feel forgiveness. Allow them to disarm the hands that brother now goes against brother so that understanding may emerge from a place where hatred is now,” concluded Francis in his prayer.
The Pope has condemned the invasion in the past and uncharacteristically breached diplomatic protocol when he personally visited the Russian Embassy in Rome.