Arson thwarted at Ukrainian church at children’s rehabilitation center

Odessa, November 6, 2018

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On the night of November 4 to 5, unknown perpetrators set fire to the bell tower of the Church of the “See My Humility” Icon of the Mother of God in Odessa, located at a children’s rehabilitation center, reports the Diocese of Odessa.

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The attackers also tried to break down the front door of the church. Thanks to the vigilance of the security guards, the fire was quickly noticed and localized. The arsonists fled in an unknown direction. The police and fire fighters were called to the scene of the incident.

Apartment buildings and the children’s rehabilitation center are located next to the church. Children and adults with psychophysical disabilities who are undergoing rehabilitation at the center are regular parishioners at the church, and the rector of the parish, the well-known Archpriest Andrei Kirlik, spiritually nourishes the center’s patients.

“The attempt to set fire to the church where those struggling with serious maladies since childhood receive spiritual care and support is not only an encroachment on the people’s sacred site, but also an expression of extreme contempt for people who require special care and warmth,” the diocesan site writes.

“This crime is further evidence that the forces that have arisen today against the Church and the people’s holy sites are inspired by extreme godlessness and inhumanity,” the diocese continues.

The diocese also calls upon law enforcement agencies to protect the Church’s holy sites, and to the people of God to reverently and lovely protect the Christian faith and not allow the mockery of the Church and its holy sites.

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