‘We can make a difference,’ says Bishop of Chelmsford

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March 15, 2022

Writing in last week’s edition of the Essex Chronicle (March 10, 2022), Bishop Guli laid out the ways in which people can make a difference and support the people of Ukraine

In the article, Bishop Guli says:

“We have all been deeply disturbed by the great evil we witness daily on our TV screens and social media in Ukraine. We see heartbreaking stories that remind us of the destructive nature of war: on communities, families , and nations.

In Russia, we see ordinary citizens taking a stand despite the threat of reprisals and sanctions; from the small group of primary school children who were arrested for laying flowers in front of the Ukrainian Embassy in Moscow to the thousands of people currently demonstrating in major Russian cities. These acts show that this war is not being waged by the Russian people but by the Russian state.

It’s easy to feel helpless when we’re so far away, but we can make a difference. In the UK, we often take our freedom of speech for granted, but we can make the most of that freedom now by keeping up the pressure on our government to help Ukrainian refugees; by writing to our MPs, local newspapers and using our voices on social media.

We can donate to the many organizations supporting Ukrainians. In the Diocese of Chelmsford, we are supporting an appeal by the Church of England Diocese in Europe to provide humanitarian support to those in Ukraine and those fleeing to neighboring countries.

Churches, community groups and schools can also provide support through community sponsorship through the Global Sanctuary Foundation (see below).

As Christians, we also turn to prayer. Below is an adapted version of a prayer written by the Archbishops of Canterbury and York which can be used by anyone to pray for the people of Ukraine and Russia at any time:

God of peace and justice,
we pray for the people of Ukraine and Russia today.
We pray for peace and the laying down of arms.
We pray for all who fear for tomorrow,
let your Spirit of consolation draw near to them.
We pray for those who have power over war or peace,
for wisdom, discernment and compassion
to guide their decisions.
Above all, we pray for all your precious children, in danger and in fear,
that you would like to hold and protect them.
We pray in the name of Jesus, the Prince of Peace. Amen


More information

Supporting People Arriving from Ukraine: The Global Sanctuary Program

The UK government has announced that it is developing a new humanitarian sponsorship scheme which will allow an unlimited number of Ukrainian families to come to the UK. It will help and expedite the government response if potential sponsors show interest as soon as possible

Potential ways of support through the Global Sanctuary program include:

  • Welcoming a Ukrainian family to live in your community
  • Finding and possibly arranging suitable accommodation
  • Support fundraising (in previous sponsorships this has been £1-9,000 per family)
  • Support and integration through volunteering

Find out more and express your interest

Emergency appeal from the Diocese in Europe USPG Ukraine

The Church of England Diocese in Europe has partnered with United Society Partners in the Gospel (USPG) to organize an emergency appeal to support humanitarian work both in Ukraine and with refugees fleeing to the countries neighbors.

The appeal’s website contains resources to help churches promote the appeal in their own parish communications.

Learn more or donate

Refugee ministry in our diocese

For more information on refugee ministry in the Diocese of Chelmsford, please click here.

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