By Francesca Merlo
March 14-15th saw the Polish Bishops gather in Warsaw for their 391st Plenary Meeting. In a statement released on the last day of the meeting, the Bishops expressed their desire to “speak out against Russia’s unjustified aggression against Ukraine, an independent and sovereign country governed by democratic principles.”
The Bishops go on to call on those responsible for “the outbreak of the aggression against the State and people of Ukraine to stop hostilities as soon as possible and to make efforts to conclude a just peace.”
At the same time, continues the Bishops, “we call upon all the faithful to fervently pray for peace in Ukraine, combining, if possible, their prayer with fasting.”
Bringing their appeal to an end, the Bishops “wholeheartedly thank all people”, and especially Caritas Poland and the diocesan Caritas, who have given selfless assistance from the very beginning, and who “continue helping our sisters and brothers in Ukraine and those coming to Poland to seek refuge with us from the horrors of the war.”
Refugees fleeing to Poland
Poland has welcomed the majority of refugees fleeing Ukraine. In the two weeks since Russia attacked Ukraine, more than 1.4 million Ukrainians have crossed into Poland – the largest influx of refugees the country has seen since World War II.
Nations directly to the west and south of Ukraine have also accepted large numbers of refugees.
Since the invasion began on 24 February, more than 245,000 Ukrainians have entered Hungary, while over 195,000 have fled to Slovakia, according to UNHCR data released last Friday.