On a very wet and windy Tuesday evening over 1000 Ukrainians and supporters of Ukraine gathered at the Iconic Sydney Opera House to “Sand with Ukraine”.
The Sydney Opera House, one of the most iconic buildings in the world, has been lit up with the colours of the Ukrainian National Flag, an initiative of the Government of New South Wales and the Opera House Trust.
Very Rev. Fr Simon Ckuj, Protosynkellos of the Eparchy of Sts Peter and Paul of Melbourne and pastor of St Andrew’s Ukrainian Catholic Church in Sydney and Fr Michael Smolenec of the Ukrainian Autocephalic Orthodox Church in Sydney were invited by the government to begin proceedings with a prayer.
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In his introduction Fr Simon called on all faiths to unite as one in prayer. Catholics and Orthodox, Jewish and Muslim as well as other faiths and even those with no faith to join together. He then prayed “ O God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, who called Moses to lead his captive people to the Promised Land, who did arm David arm David with stones to smite the evil Goliath, who sent his prophets to guide His people on the path of righteousness and who gave His only begotten Son for the life of the world, send your blessing upon the people of Ukraine, strengthen her armies against the enemy, enlighten her government, give hope to her people. Comfort those who morn and grant eternal rest to those who have died” Fr Michael then led the crowd in the Lords Prayer.
Among those who came to show their support was the Archbishop of Sydney Most Rev. Anthony Fisher, with the Dean and priests from St Mary’s Cathedral.
In his address Premier Perrotet spoke in support of the Ukrainian people and for Ukrainians living in New South Wales. He said. “the illumination of the Opera House is yet one more star in the constellation of those who support freedom and peace. We stand with Ukraine!”
Press Service of the Eparchy