We recently received this article from Bishop Tamás Fabiny from our Companion Church in Hungary about the situation in Ukraine.
Prayer for Ukraine
What the two have in common, is post-Communist heritage on the one hand and an ethnic conflict on the other. A third factor worth mentioning is the considerable Hungarian-speaking minority both in Vojvodina back then and in Subcarpathia now which could easily become a victim of this insane conflict.
Of course I am not a political analyst and I cannot specifically define the reason for making war. On the surface though, I see that there was a former leadership befriended with the Russian which has been defeated by a persistent fight: Through demonstration in the streets and multiple tools of civil resistance of a very colourful opposition called nationalistic by many but actually often even fighting among themselves.
nearly every second of it broadcasted by the media.
We were almost thinking democracy had triumphed over dictatorship when we received the news about one of the first decisions of the new leadership to terminate the former law on language use which used to be advantageous for Hungarians.
The outsider could more and more experience just as if it would be a severe fight between groups of politicians financed by the oligarchs.
I am seeing less and less clear in a world where hardly no-one is able to withhold the passions and raw instincts anymore and where everything is quite visibly subordinated to games of power operated by interests and where we are only offered food prepared in some political cuisine.
I cannot do else than try to get into personal contact with those whose word I can rely on. Before informing the synod of our church about the situation in Ukraine, I contact colleagues at the Hungarian Interchurch Aid which has a strong Lutheran leadership and ask what are their plans in this critical situation.
I also contact the General Secretary of the Lutheran World Federation who informs me about steps taken by this more than 70-million-member organisation for the victims in Ukraine and for stabilising the situation. I hear that the German Evangelical Lutheran congregation in Kiev has also been active in helping those in need.
But above all, I want to hear the voice of my friends in Subcarpathia on the phone. I have had the opportunity to visit them several times: My last visit was a year ago in a Reformed congregation where I could also meet the last few Lutherans who are left in the region.
I can only ask the readers to pray for Ukraine exposed to the terror of war and for the different parties to come to peace. Let the bloodshed and unfair practices come to an end. Let us pray especially for our fellow Hungarians in Subcarpathia so that they wouldn’t fall victim of violent acts or become a scapegoat in a conflict between nationalities.
Dona Nobis Pacem. Give us peace, o, Lord.
Church in Hungary
Evangélikus Élet on 9 March 2014