Letters from Br. Błażej: Night 409

April 9, 2023

The Lord Jesus is risen! He is truly risen !

The Word… Reading from the Acts of the Apostles. Peter proceeded to speak and said:

You know what has happened all over Judea, beginning in Galilee after the baptism that John preached, how God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit and power. He went about doing good and healing all those oppressed by the devil, for God was with him. We are witnesses of all that he did both in the country of the Jews and in Jerusalem. They put him to death by hanging him on a tree. This man God raised on the third  day and granted that he be visible, not to all the people, but to us, the witnesses chosen by God in advance, who ate and drank with him after he rose from the dead. He commissioned us to preach to the people and testify that he is the one appointed by God as judge of the living and the dead. To him all the prophets bear witness, that everyone who believes in him will receive forgiveness of sins through his name.

We live in a war, we do not live by war.

Reading from the Letter of St. Paul the Apostle to the Colossians:

Brothers and sisters: If then you were raised with Christ, seek what is above, where Christ is seated at the right hand of God. Think of what is above, not of what is on earth. For you have died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God. When Christ your life appears, then you too will appear with him in glory.

The words of the Gospel according to St. John:

On the first day of the week, Mary of Magdala came to the tomb early in the morning, while it was still dark, and saw the stone removed from the tomb. So she ran and went to Simon Peter and to the other disciple whom Jesus loved, and told them, “They have taken the Lord from the tomb, and we don’t know where they put him.” So Peter and the other disciple went out and came to the tomb. They both ran, but the other disciple ran faster than Peter and arrived at the tomb first; He bent down and saw the burial cloths there, but did not go in. When Simon Peter arrived after him, he went into the tomb and saw the burial cloths there, and the cloth that had covered his head, not with the burial cloths but rolled up in a separate place. Then the other disciple also went in, the one who had arrived at the tomb first, and he saw and believed. For they did not yet understand the Scripture that he had to rise from the dead.

Best wishes.

The Lord Jesus is risen! He is truly risen!

Letters from Br. Błażej: Night 408

April 8, 2023

Night and morning calm only in central and western Ukraine. Alarms in central Ukraine, in Vinnytsia and Kyiv.

The Word… An ancient homily for Holy and Holy Saturday:

“What happened? A great silence shrouded the earth; a great silence and emptiness upon it. Great silence because the King fell asleep. The earth became overcast and silent, because God fell asleep in human flesh, and raised up those who had been asleep for centuries. God died in the flesh, and moved the Abyss. … For you I, your God, became your son. For you I, the Lord, took the form of a servant. For you I, who am above the heavens, came to earth and descended into its depths. For you, man, I became as a man powerless, but free among the dead. For you, who forsook the garden of Eden, I was delivered to the Jews in the garden of Olives and crucified in the garden.”

For you… God is love !

We live in a war, we do not live by war.

May the Venerable Servant of God Fr. Seraphim Kashuba, the one from Lviv and Vinnytsia, ask God for a just peace for Ukraine and our hearts. (photo)

Avdiivka (Donetsk Region):
This is a manifestation of human sin and Russian terrorism. (photo)

Hostomel Airport:
At the beginning of the war the terrorists destroyed a Ukrainian joy, the world’s largest Antonov transport plane “Мрія” (Dream). The factory announced the construction of a new similar aircraft. (photo)

Traditionally a Lenten meal of the Capuchin community. We read the Passion of Christ on our knees, eating bread with salt. (photo)
Adoration of the Holy Cross and the Lord’s Tomb. (photo)

Br. Vadym Shtogrin celebrates his name day tomorrow. Brother, we wish you Pascha, transition from death to life. The experience of the empty tomb. Best wishes.

News from the brothers:

Dnipro (Br. Yaroslav Fedirchuk):
Adoration of the Lord Jesus abandoned in prison.

Kamianske (Br. Volodya Procko):
Adoration of the cross. (photo)

Krasyliv (Br. Maciej Styburski):
Holy Thursday. Washing of feet. (photo)

Lviv (Br. Kazimierz Guzik):
Stations of the Cross in Lviv at the Capuchins’. (photo)
Good Friday service. (photo)

Jesus died and was laid in the tomb. With hope we wait…

Letters from Br. Błażej: Night 407

April 6, 2023

Warlike calm. Alarms in the East. Massive fights in the area of Bakhmut and Avdiivka. People are being killed.
God, grant for a just peace!

The Word… The prophet Isaiah writes: “But He burdened Himself with our suffering, He bore our sorrows, and we regarded Him as a convict, flogged by God and trampled on. But He was pierced for our sins, crushed for our iniquities. The flogging that saved us fell on Him, and in His wounds is our healing.”
In His wounds is our healing.
“And though He was the Son, He learned obedience by what He suffered. And when He had accomplished everything, He became the author of eternal salvation for all who obey Him.”
Salvation through obedience !
This is the Word of today’s liturgy that can change our lives.

We live in a war, we do not live by war.


Liturgy of Holy Thursday. (photo)

Young priests from four different orders, among them Br. Sergey Voronyuk, Capuchin, express their gratitude for the gift of priesthood. (photo)

News from the brothers:

Kyiv (Br. Sergey Kippa):
On the occasion of the establishment of the priesthood, I wish that God grant you, brothers, the grace of unity with the Sacrifice of Christ. May the Spirit of God guide you through the Triduum! Buona Pasqua!!!

Dnipro (Br. Yaroslav Fedirchuk):

Lviv (Br. Kazimierz Guzik):
During the liturgy, acceptance into the ranks of altar servers. (photo)

Krasyliv (Br. Maciej Styburski):
Washing of feet at the liturgy in Krasyliv. (photo)

Kyiv (Br. Viktor Deschuk):
Thursday wishes. (photo)

Starokostiantyniv (Br. Sergey Gubitsky):
Today’s (Thursday) wishes for brother priests. (photo)

Kamianske (Br. Vladislav Gmyrko):
Jesus imprisoned—Designed and made by Br. Volodya Procko together with the community of renewal in the Holy Spirit. (photo)

Jesus lives. Thrown into prison.

Letters from Br. Błażej: Night 405

April 5, 2023

Alarms that I have not heard for a month now, yesterday at 12:41 p.m. in Vinnytsia. And so all over Ukraine. All Ukraine is red.

The Word… Holy Week, a powerful Word and request. “Every morning He stimulates my ear to listen like the disciples. The Lord God has opened my ear, and I have neither resisted nor retreated.”
Open my ear so that I listen to God, not to myself, and through obedience to the Word, I will not betray Jesus or run away from the cross.
“The Lord God supports me, that’s why I am insensitive to insults, that’s why I have made my face like a boulder, and I know that I will not be ashamed. Near is He who will acquit me.”
God is love!

We live in a war, we do not live by war.

Franciscan youth, together with the Capuchin friars held a fair. They donated the proceeds to help the ZSU (Armed Forces of Ukraine). (photo)

America is opening up. They even write about us in English.

News from the brothers:

Dnipro (Br. Yaroslav Fedirchuk):
Stand in support of the ZSU, in Dnipro on the Day of Passion Sunday. Franciscan Youth Initiative. (photo)

Lviv (Br. Sergey Voronyuk):
We visit our Defenders in Lviv’s St. Luke’s Hospital. Deo gratias, for everyone who pays the highest price for our freedom! (photo)

Jesus lives!

Letters from Br. Błażej: Night 404

April 4, 2023

Another night and day of rocket fire. The Donetsk and Kherson regions have suffered the most. Innocent people are being killed. More torture and execution sites are being discovered. (photo)
On that night, Ukraine was attacked with 17 drone strikes. 14 of them were averted.
God, grant us peace.

The Word… The following Word from the Song of the Servant of Yahweh fully announces the message, the mission of Jesus. As Christians, we follow Jesus. These words also apply to our vocation, our Christian journey.

“And now the Lord spoke, who formed me from birth to be his Servant, that I should convert Jacob to him, and gather Israel to him. And He said: “It is too little that you are My Servant for the uplifting of the tribes of Jacob and the bringing in of the survivors of Israel! I will establish you as a light to the Gentiles, that My salvation may reach to the ends of the earth.” Isaiah 49:1-6

This mission is beyond me, I don’t know about you?
Let us pray Ps 71:

“Be to me a rock of refuge and a fortified castle to save me,
For You are my rock of refuge and fortress.
My God, deliver me from the hand of the wicked one.”

In Jesus is our power and strength.
“Welcome, our King, obedient to the will of the Father, as a meek lamb to be slain you were led to crucifixion.”

God is love!

We live in a war, we do not live by war!

News from the brothers:

Kamianske (Br. Vladislav Gmyrko):
Celebrating Palm Sunday in Kamianske. (photo)

Krasyliv (Br. Maciej Styburski):
Thanks to the initiative of the Capuchin Sisters, a fair was held for ZSU on Palm Sunday. Thanks to the sisters, parishioners, parish groups and missionaries of the School of Mary for preparing and carrying out this wonderful event! (photo)
On Saturday a retreat for the youth “Oazis” ended in Krasyliv. More than 100 people from different villages participated. Here are some photos. (photo)

Jesus lives!

Letters from Br. Błażej: Night 403

April 3, 2023

A wartime calm. In some areas alarms, explosions and as in Kostyantynivka, Donetsk region, three people were killed. (photo)
God, grant us peace, and to the dead of this war, eternal rest. Amen.

The Word… As we read, as we listen to Psalm 27, let us look at Jesus, let us enter into intimacy with Him. Gazing at Jesus, he looks at our fears, our anxieties, the war in our head, in our emotions, and the war around us, in Ukraine.
“The Lord my light and my salvation, whom should I fear?
The Lord the defender of my life, from whom should I feel trepidation?
When I am surrounded by evildoers who want to devour me,
they themselves, my enemies and foes, falter and fall.
Even when enemies camp against me, my heart will not feel fear.
Even though I am attacked with arms, even then I will keep my confidence.
I believe that I will behold the good of the Lord in the land of the living.
Expect the Lord, be valiant, take courage and expect the Lord.”

God is love!!!
There is no fear in true love.
God is love

We live in a war, we do not live by war.

Bishop Leon Dubravsky traditionally rides into the cathedral on a donkey, chasing the donkey with a palm. (photo)

“We have guests” (Br. Kazimierz Guzik) among the Lvovians, Br. Rafal Pysiak, provincial vicar, and Br. Sergey Kippa, custos. (photo)

Fair. Proceeds earmarked for the ZSU. (photo)

News from the brorthers:

Vinnytsia (Br. Igor Mularski):
Franciscan Youth. Palm branches and a fair to benefit ZSU. (photo)

Kamianske (Br. Volodya Procko):
Greetings to all on the occasion of Palm Sunday!
And this is the community of Transfiguration—Renewal in the Holy Spirit. And me as their assistant. (photo)

Jesus lives!

Letters from Br. Błażej: Night 402

April 2, 2023

Wartime quiet. Regular war on the frontline. War in media space, information space, propaganda space. Religious war with the pro-Russian Orthodox Church of the Moscow Patriarchate.
War in our heads and hearts.
God, give us peace!

The Word… Lent, 40 days, has ended. Holy Week is beginning. A time of great Words and events in salvation history. God, give us a time of great listening. Open my eyes and ears. “Convert us and we will be converted to you.”
“Hosanna! Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord. Blessed is the kingdom of our father David, which is coming. Hosanna in the highest!”
Our human nature: How close is the word “Hosanna” to the word “Crucify Him.” Similarly, the word “love” and “hate.”
“The Lord God supports me, that’s why I am insensitive to insults, that’s why I have made my face like a boulder, and I know that I will not be ashamed.”

We live in a war, we do not live by war.

Russian terrorism makes its presence known. More damage to city’s residential infrastructure. (photo)

Children who participated in workshops and made chocolate for their loved ones at the front received a thank-you note from the Armed Forces of Ukraine. (photo)

Night of vigil. (photo)

First Saturday of the month. Meeting of the Knights of John Paul II and Rosary of men. (photo)

News from the brothers:

Dnipro (Br. Yaroslav Fedirchuk):
Franciscan Youth of Dinpro are preparing for a fair in support of the Armed Forces of Ukraine for Palm Sunday. (photo)

Krasyliv/Slobidka-Krasylivs’ka (Bro. Leonid Kushniruk):

To all a good and peace-filled day!
Today a summary of two days of work on the culinary front. Everything as always, baking bread, dumplings, stuffed cabbage… Today we sent everything that could be packed to Bakhmut.
Thank you all for your physical and financial help. We have no right to be discouraged, to “lower our hands”, because imagine how hard it is for our defenders, what if they were discouraged to defend us? And they, too, come upon moments of fatigue, discouragement, loss of faith in victory… The war is dragging on, everyone mentally and physically exhausted, and our help and support badly needed by the soldiers!
Therefore, with all our strength, we continue to do what we started, unite and stick together!
From Monday in school holidays, but the kitchen is working. So we are waiting for your hands! Together to victory! Ms. Natalija. (photo)

Kamianske (Br. Volodymyr Procko):
Missing photos to yesterday’s post.

Jesus lives!

Letters from Br. Błażej: Night 401

April 1, 2023

Unsettled. Alarms in various northern and eastern districts.

The Word… Let’s follow the Word. “… I will be their God, and they shall be My people. And the heathen peoples shall know that I am the Lord who sanctifies Israel, when my tabernacle shall be among them forever.”
God is love.

We live in a war, we do not live by war.

We host our superiors of the Krakow province, Br. Mark Miszczynski, provincial minister, and Br. Raf Pysiak, vicar.

Invitation to “Prayer of adoration with Mary.” (photo)

Yesterday was the anniversary of the liberation of Bucha from Russian occupation.

Bucha. 33 days of occupation. More than 1,400 killed, including 37 children. More than 175 people found in mass graves and torture targets. 9,000 Russian military villains.
365 days this city is free again. This city has become a symbol of the degeneracy of the army of the land of occupation.
“We will never forgive. We will punish all the guilty”, wrote Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky and published a video in honor of the anniversary of the deoccupation—City of Heroes. (by Ukrainian News)

Invitation from Capuchin Sisters to a fair.

Preparations for the fair took a long time. Many of our parishioners donated their time and talents. We have various decorations, handmade chocolates, cakes, napkins, socks… and many, many other things.
We will donate the proceeds to the Armed Forces of Ukraine.
We look forward to seeing you on Sunday. (S. Margaret, photo)

News from the brothers:

Kyiv/Starokostiantyniv (Br. Sergey Kippa):
We thank the Province of Assisi for their initiatives for Ukraine.

Lviv (Br. Sergey Voronyuk):
Franciscan youth from Lviv and beyond. (photo)

Uzhgorod (Br. Marek Lisowski):
We bought and distributed 20 pots for forcibly displaced people living in a boarding school. Grateful to God for the Benefactors. (photo)

Kamianske (Br. Volodia Procko):

On Thursday, March 30, we set off on a familiar route: via Pavlohrad and Pokrovsk to Kramatorsk. The journey began at 4:30 in the morning and lasted 18 hours. In Kramatorsk we handed over the necessary items for the soldiers, and then left for Liman. From there it was possible to get to Tors’ke via Zarichne. Explosions could be heard there all day—artillery guns. We met a lot of people in the village, talked to them, distributed humanitarian aid and prayed together. The residents were very grateful that we came to them. This was our first visit to Tors’ke. Despite the bad weather, rain and snow, the mission was successful. Thank God for everything.

Jesus lives!