OXFORD, England: Bishops from Ukraine’s minority Latin-rite Catholic Church have called for prayers and fasting in an effort to end the current social unrest in the country.
Catholic social teaching recognises the right of citizens to courageously defend their legitimate concerns, said a statement from the bishops’ conference read in parishes on December 15.
And, as for the government’s reaction, they said, “restricting human rights, especially the right to express views freely, is unacceptable and disgraceful.”
The letter was read as supporters and opponents of President Viktor Yanukovych held rival rallies in Kiev, three weeks after his withdrawal from a landmark deal with the European Union sparked mass protests.
The protests were begun by young people on November 21.
The bishops called on all Catholic parishes to pray for “peace, justice, truth and honesty,” and to hold a day of fasting Dec. 16 as “a sign of solidarity with our brothers and sisters.”