Crisis: Massive Flooding Hits Ukraine

Western Ukraine this week is struggling to recover after torrential rains brought massive flooding 22-30 June, devastating thousands of homes.

Last Sunday, during his Angelus address, Pope Francis asked the world to pray for the people of Ukraine:

“May they experience the Lord’s comfort and the care of their brothers and sisters,” he prayed.

At least three people have died in the flooding, and hundreds have been forced from their homes. Several villages have been cut off from surrounding areas.

Prime Minister Denys Shmygal toured the region earlier this week.

“The situation in five regions is critical. The Ivano-Frankivsk region suffered most,” he said. “The last such flood was in 2008.”

The video below, from the Associated Press, shows just how severe the flooding has been.

Adding to the suffering is a spike in COVID-19 cases in Western Ukraine. The region to date has recorded more than 44,000 cases and 1,100 deaths. Coronavirus patients have had to be transported from flooded hospitals to other treatment centers.

His Beatitude Sviatoslav Shevchuk has issued an appeal for help:

“The effects of this flood in the present economic crisis, compounded by the pandemic, carry the threat of real social trouble on a national scale,” he said. “If quick and decisive action is not taken, then before the winter we may find ourselves facing a humanitarian catastrophe. I appeal to all communities of our Church in Ukraine and throughout the world, in the spirit of the Good Samaritan in the Gospel, to support those who are now deprived of their home and have come face-to-face with misfortune.”

CNEWA’s office in Canada is raising funds to assist the people of Ukraine. You can help during this desperate time by visiting this link and selecting “Ukraine” from the drop down menu.

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