‘I will go to Ukraine, as far as I can,’ says papal envoy

I will go to Ukraine

A Vatican cardinal has said that he will travel as far as he can in Ukraine to express Pope Francis’ solidarity with the suffering population.

Cardinal Konrad Krajewski said he intended to enter the war-torn country via Poland at the pope’s behest. Krajewski holds the title of papal almoner, officially charged with performing acts of mercy on behalf of the pope.

Speaking in Poland on March 7, he said: “I bring you greetings and blessings from Pope Francis. The pope is praying and very much experiencing the situation of war. Today you have to think with the Gospel and not with the world. From Lublin, I will go to Ukraine, as far as I can.”

Krajewski is one of two of Pope Francis’ most trusted Vatican officials to go to Ukraine to seek an end to the conflict.

Along with Krajewski, Cardinal Michael Czerny will also go to the war zone in what the Vatican called “an extraordinary gesture.”

Czerny is the ad interim prefect of the Vatican Department for Promoting Integral Human Development.

“The Holy See has put itself at the service of achieving peace in Ukraine,” the Vatican said on March 7. It added that the two cardinals “are directed to Ukraine and depending on the situation they intend to reach the country in the coming days.”

The pope’s decision to send two high-ranking Vatican officials so closely tied to Francis can be interpreted as an absolute commitment by the Holy See to help mediate the Russian-Ukrainian conflict.

“The Holy See is ready to do everything to put itself at the service of this peace,” Francis said during his weekly prayer service on March 6.

“The presence of the two cardinals there is the presence not only of the pope, but of all the Christian people who want to get closer and say: ‘War is madness! Stop, please! Look at this cruelty!”

The pope lamented that “rivers of blood and tears are flowing in Ukraine.”

He added that the current conflict is “not merely a military operation, but a war, which sows death, destruction and misery.”


Religion News Service

Catholic News Agency

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