Monday, June 27, 2022

    Metropolitan Epifaniy tells how to treat refugees according to Holy Scriptures

    Metropolitan Epifaniy of Kyiv and All Ukraine noted that the Russian invasion of Ukraine caused the fastest and one of the largest forced displacement crises since World War II and, for the first time in the world, led to the fact that more than 100 million people across the world have been forced to flee their homes.

    He noted on Facebook that such data is provided in this year’s report drawn by the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees, noting that at the end of 2021 this number reached 89.3 million people.

    The head of the OCU expressed solidarity with the whole international community in supporting people who were forced to leave their homes to escape war and violence.

    Metropolitan Epifaniy writes that the Holy Scriptures contain many references to refugees and their difficult fate, as well as to how such people should be treated.

    “When a foreigner resides among you in your land, do not mistreat them. The foreigner residing among you must be treated as your native-born. Love them as yourself, for you were foreigners in Egypt. I am the Lord your God.”(Lev. 19: 33-34). Moreover, our Lord Jesus Christ Himself experienced a difficult life as a refugee in His early years, fleeing from King Herod with His earthly family.

    “Being a refugee is not humiliating, but an extremely tragic experience. It is the result of an act of evil that takes away a person’s freedom and security. But we know that evil can be defeated by good, which is why in dealing with refugees, mercy, sacrifice, help, and mutual support should come to the fore,” the bishop emphasizes.

    Epifaniy thanked everyone who provided shelter, guardianship, or other possible assistance to internally displaced persons both in Ukraine and beyond.