“Dear St Luke’s Congregation,
The Russian invasion of Ukraine has created a humanitarian crisis unlike anything seen in Europe since World War II – and throughout the history of the Christmas Bowl.
According to the UN refugee agency, in just over a week more than 1.5 million refugees have already fled their homes in Ukraine to neighbouring countries. And millions more people could become refugees, forced from their homes and their loved ones if the fighting continues.
As you may know, we’ve launched an emergency appeal to support the people affected by the conflict in Ukraine and I hope that you will find time during this busy season to take part. This is a situation we must respond to together.
I have written to thousands of churches across Australia. I am asking you and the members of your church to join us as we respond to Christ’s call to love our neighbour.
Your congregation has been faithful and generous supporters of the Christmas Bowl and Act for Peace’s work over many years.
I pray that you are moved by the Spirit and heed God’s call to help displaced families forced from their homes by this horrific conflict.
Our ACT Alliance partners in neighbouring Hungary have already sent truckloads of relief to support families forced from their homes by the war.
The shipments include 28 tonnes of canned food, flour, sugar, oil, rice, pasta, biscuits, long-life milk, tea and hygiene products which will be distributed at the Beregszasz and Uzhhorod reception centres in Western Ukraine. But much, much more is needed.
While I know it’s an incredibly busy time for churches with Lenten preparations taking place, this senseless violence in Ukraine is causing an urgent need.
I was reflecting on this week’s Psalm, Psalm 91, and the words of the Psalmist really struck me, especially those in verse five.
“You will not fear the terror of the night, or the arrow that flies by day.”
Those words took on new meaning as I heard the reports from our ecumenical partners telling us of families hiding, and mothers comforting terrified children as they shelter from the missiles of invading forces. It is my prayer that these resilient people stay safe and are able to take refuge in the Lord.”
This Sunday, please pick up an envelope and use it to donate to the emergency appeal for Ukraine. Or you can donate online here: