On the 25-26 of February, Bishop Mykola made an official visit to Brisbane, Queensland.

During the visit, Bishop Mykola met with Bishop Mark Coleridge, Archbishop of Brisbane, President of the Australian Catholic Bishops Conference (ACBC), and Bishop Tim Norton, Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Brisbane. The meeting was also attended by Fr. Stefan Sapun, Administrator of Brisbane Parish and Deacon Michael Zylan, Chancellor of the Melbourne Eparchy. One of the results of the meeting was the Official Statement of the ACBC with respect to the War in Ukraine.

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On 26th of February, the Bishop visited the parish of the Protection of the Mother of God in Brisbane, Queensland. Before the beginning of the Hierarchical Divine Liturgy, the Bishop was greeted with much joy and with bread and salt by Fr. Stefan Sapun, pastor of the church, deacon Michael Zylan, Chancellor of the Melbourne Eparchy with the faithful. The service was also attended by Fr. Mykola Serdyuk, a priest of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church in Australia from St. Nicholas Parish in Brisbane.

During the homily, Bishop Mykola emphasized that “Today’s Gospel tells us about the last judgment and reminds each of us of the time when we will have to report to God for our deeds. The current events in Ukraine lead us to different opinions of condemnation, hatred and anger. And this can be understood since the war began. It seems that the President of Russia lives as if there were no God; moreover, he considers himself as a “god.” We read well about this in Psalm 13: “The fool says in his heart, “There is no God.” However, we as Christians believe in God, who will help us repel all the arrows of the wicked in this war, giving us victory over the enemy.”

At the conclusion of the Liturgy, the Bishop with priests and the faithful knelt in prayer for peace in Ukraine. Afterwards, the Bishop expressed his sincere gratitude to Fr. Stefan with his family for zealous and tireless service and faithful to the church for working for the benefit of our Church in Australia.

Following the Liturgy, the faithful gathered in the parish hall, where they had the opportunity to indulge in a delicious lunch prepared by the church council. During the meal, the faithful had a special opportunity to speak with their Pastor. In the post lunch speech, the Bishop also mentioned that “patriotism, marches, flag waving are a good thing to support Ukraine, but to insure a quick end to the war what is most needed daily prayers for peace in Ukraine and weekly attendance at the Divine Liturgies. I strongly call upon all of you to do this as a part of your daily life”.

This post is also available in: Ukrainian