The Provincial of Polska Province gives us the latest report on the Province’s continued provision of shelter, financial assistance, volunteer work to the people of Ukraine:
As I do every week, I would like to share with you more news about the assistance we are providing to our brothers and sisters in Ukraine. I would like to emphasize at the outset that I am not in a position to describe all the forms of assistance we provide because I simply do not have such knowledge – I only write about what I have been told or have ascertained myself. Moreover, these words are addressed especially to people from outside our Polish Province, and for them, the details are not so important, because the most important thing is that practically all our Polish communities are helping: providing accommodation, financial assistance, participation in volunteer activities or organizing collections of basic necessities.
The latest data from the National Border Guard already indicate that more than 2.3 million refugees have arrived in our country. Help seems to be getting better and better organized, even at the state level. Although the help we provide as a nation comes first and foremost from the depths of our hearts, we are pleased that it is also recognized internationally. All the more so since in recent years a number of hurtful and untrue opinions have appeared about the situation in Poland. Of the many positive opinions, one, in particular, caught my attention: A British or American journalist has proposed awarding the Nobel Peace Prize to Poland for its aid to Ukraine. Why not? But, of course, whatever the outcome, we continue to help.
As for our assistance in the last week, it was actually pretty much similar to what we provided in previous weeks: where we welcome refugees, we take care of their daily life, helping them to regularize their legal status or to find work; in other circumstances: purchase and distribution of the necessities of daily life (food, chemicals, medicines, school supplies, clothing).
We have been contacted by a foundation from Spain, which is organizing aid for Ukraine and wants to transfer it here in Poland or Ukraine through us.
In addition, we are preparing to transport the necessary items, which early next week – Br. Tadeusz, Br. Łukasz and I – will take to our brothers in Truskavets and Boryslaw, as well as to the Sisters working with them (this will include an electricity generator (9 kW) for the local hospital, as well as medical materials that will be moved deep into Ukraine, where the most intense fighting is taking place). We hope to bring you more news on this when we return.
As for our confreres in Ukraine, they are doing well: In addition to their pastoral ministry, they are constantly engaged in providing resources to people who come to them from eastern Ukraine. They also travel to the mountains near Truskavets, where there are also refugees, and donate basic necessities there.
To conclude, I would like to thank once again all the help that is reaching us from almost everywhere (Portugal and Cameroon join the places already described). Thank you not only for your material support, which is invaluable, but above all for your prayers and every message that reminds us that we are a great Claretian Family. We ask you not to stop praying and fasting, because it seems that “this kind of demons cannot be expelled except through prayer and fasting”.
May the good Lord bless you,
In union in prayer:
Piotr Bęza, CMF, Provincial of the Province of Poland.