Update – February 28, 2022
Basia Wójcik, L’Arche International Representative, reports:
“So far, neither Lviv nor Ternopil – where our communities are based – have been attacked, all are safe. All citizens, including our community members, have stopped going to work. This means our communities – which only provide daytime projects – do not function any longer either. People sit at home, watching news and praying. The 2 Community Leaders try to organize on-line meetings but few people have computers and the internet is not reliable any longer either. Normal functioning in the cities has stopped. Public transport is limited. Only grocery shops and pharmacies are open. There is a shortage of bread in Lviv, but other kinds of food are still available. People also have supplies at home. From time to time an alarm siren calls people to go to their shelters and basements. Everyone is urged to turn out the lights when it gets darker. Universal conscription into the army has been announced: no men between 18 and 60 can leave the country.”
L’Arche Kovcheh (Lviv, Ukraine) welcomed 6 refugees from Eastern Ukraine. L’Arche communities in Lithuania and Poland have also offered a place of welcome for members of Ukraine. A sign of solidarity among our communities!
February 23rd, 2022
Today, the eyes of the whole world are on Ukraine.
Basia Wójcik, International Envoy, writes:
“Our two Communities – the older and better known L’Arche Kovcheh in Lviv and the younger L’Arche Project in Ternopil are located in the west of the country. For the time being, everyone is safe, although very concerned about the situation. Especially as their neighbours, relatives and friends have been fighting and dying on the front line for the past years. Visiting the Communities, I have witnessed funerals, exhibitions of photographs of fallen young men, and seen women weaving nets to camouflage the army. At present, the spectre of war is even more terrifying.
Community people are full of concern but trying to lead normal lives. Here is what Olesia, the Leader of L’Arche Kovcheh in Lviv says: ‘I seem to live in 2 realities when life seems to go on, as usual, work-meetings-laughter-friends, and despite this constant feeling of anxiety/preparation in case of lack of water, light, and internet and checking the news every minute. (…) We are making grand plans for the future, despite the fact that today everything looks so fragile, and it is difficult to say what will happen tomorrow.’
Today Communities receive many signals of support, encouragement, signs of solidarity and questions on how to help. They may not be able to answer all the messages. However, they are very grateful for are all the expressions of remembrance and fraternity.
Above all, L’Arche Ukraine asks all the Communities across the Federation to pray for them for their country and for peace.
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