Saturday, July 13, 2024

    Timothy Snyder on UGCC primate’s book: “Ukrainians have done more for the world than the world has done for them”

    In the United States, there is some concern about the gratitude expressed by Ukrainians. I consider it shameful, because it is rather the Americans who should thank the Ukrainians for what they have done. An acclaimed American historian and writer Timothy Snyder writes about this in the afterword to the book penned by the Head of the UGCC “Ukraine is standing! Ukraine is fighting! Ukraine is praying!”.

    This is according to the UGCC press service.

    “His Beatitude Sviatoslav thanks someone day after day, expressing his gratitude always from a position of humility,” notes Timothy Snyder. “I am grateful for this book, as I am sure others will be grateful, because people seek to understand the experience of war and moral principles of resistance.”

    In the afterword to the spiritual diary of the Head of the UGCC in the first year of the war, Timothy Snyder emphasizes that instead of “premeditated sermons or simple formulas,” His Beatitude Sviatoslav offers “a desire to act and raise serious theological questions amid the complexity of human suffering.”

    Timothy Snyder notes that in the addresses of the Primate of the UGCC, the church calendar, the timeline of the week and year are superimposed on the daily history of atrocities and suffering. “We understand that war is not just a timeline, it needs to be rediscovered every time, and that we also need to discover ourselves – every moment,” the professor notes.

    “We should beware of the ‘internal occupier of [our]self’, not to fall into despair and hopelessness and not to look for excuses. We bear witness to the world when we act on the impulse of inner convictions that help others remain human,” writes the author of the afterword.

    Timothy Snyder also analyzes how the book interprets the Commandments: “These theological statements, interesting at any time, appear here in close connection with war. It is difficult to come up with more serious sermons amid war, although, of course, there is a Ukrainian precedent – the address of Andriy Sheptytskyi.”

    He emphasizes that in this book His Beatitude Sviatoslav continues the tradition of the pastoral messages of Metropolitan Andriy Sheptytskyi delivered during the war and quotes his predecessor on important issues of Ukrainian society.

    It should be recalled, that on June 6, the book by the Head of the UGCC was presented in Kyiv. It contains the texts of his daily addresses to people of goodwill around the world, delivered during the first year of the full-scale invasion.