Kiev, November 25, 2019
On Saturday, November 23, the day of the remembrance of the victims of the Holodomor and political repressions, memorial services were held in all churches and monasteries of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church, with the blessing of His Beatitude Metropolitan Onuphry of Kiev and All Ukraine, reports the Information-Education Department of the Ukrainian Church.
In the Izyum Diocese, a memorial litiya was celebrated at a memorial cross on Kremyenets Hill by Archpriest Oleg Kadyuk and Archdeacon Dimitry Shilko.
Following the litiya, Fr. Oleg addressed those gathered with a moving word:
Without the past, there is no present; there is no future without the present! Today we remember the tragic events of our past; a terrible crime was committed against our people. There were times when it could not even be mentioned, but our people still retained this terrible memory. Every time we touch the sensitive pages of our history, we must remember that this cannot be an occasion for political manipulation and demagoguery. We have to touch the topic of the Holodomor with great regret, sadness, and indescribable pain. And today the Church calls everyone to common prayer and honor. Memory eternal to the millions of innocent victims, and to us, their descendants, may God grant unity, mutual understanding, love, consciousness, principles, firmness and mercy!
Below is a short video from a memorial service in the Rivne Diocese:
Clergy also took part in state ceremonies throughout Ukraine in memory of one of the most tragic pages in Ukrainian history.
Met. Onuphry and several other hierarchs of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church also participated in a memorial event in honor of the victims of the Holodomor on Saturday at the National Museum of the Holodomor.
Joining His Beatitude were His Eminence Metropolitan Anthony of Boryspil and Brovary, His Grace Bishop Viktor of Baryshevka, His Grace Bishop Sylvester of Belogorod, and His Grace Bishop Dionisiy of Pereyaslav-Khelmnitsky.
The state ceremony was headed by President Vladimir Zelensky and attended by representatives of the government and diplomatic corps, public figures, and religious leaders of various faiths.
The President announced a nationwide minute of silence, and he and his wife placed lit candles at the “Bitter Memory of Childhood” sculpture. Finally, those present paid tribute to all those who died of hunger in 1932 to 1933.
Holodomor Memorial Day is celebrated annually on the fourth Saturday of November, falling on November 23 this year.