Bishop Edward Kawa, the Auxiliary Bishop of Lviv, Ukraine, has raised his voice against the destruction of valuable humanitarian aid in the city of Lviv due to a drone strike.
The bishop has characterized this act as a cruel assault on the most vulnerable in society.
Bishop Kawa conveyed his concerns to the Catholic charity, Aid to the Church in Need (ACN), describing the drone strike on the Caritas-Spes warehouse in his diocese on September 19 as a devastating blow to those who rely on assistance. The charitable donations stored in the warehouse were meant to be dispatched to Kharkiv and Pavlograd in the coming days, intended to alleviate the suffering of the less fortunate.
Startling reports obtained by ACN reveal that a staggering 300,000 kilograms of charitable donations, equivalent to the contents of 15 large lorries, sent by the Vatican and other organizations, were housed in the warehouse.
The items obliterated in the attack included vital supplies such as food, shoes, winter clothing, and more than 100 emergency generators, which could have provided crucial relief to those in need. Tragically, a security guard at the warehouse lost his life in the attack.
In response to the heart-wrenching incident, Pope Francis issued a condemnation of the use of conventional weapons against civilian targets. He conveyed his message to Ghanian Cardinal Peter Turkson, expressing his deep concern about the drone strike’s impact on innocent lives.
Bishop Kawa offered a glimmer of hope by revealing that four lorries had departed from the warehouse just two days before the attack, carrying relief goods destined for Zaporizhzhia. Therefore, not all of the generous donations were lost.
In a heartfelt plea, the Bishop urged people not to forget the ongoing struggles faced by Ukraine, emphasizing the impending challenges as winter approaches. He concluded his message with a blessing, saying, “Winter is coming, and the war is not over. God bless you.”
Throughout the duration of the war in Ukraine, Aid to the Church in Need (ACN) has been an unwavering source of support for the local Church. ACN has initiated more than 350 projects, amounting to a staggering value of over £13 million.
ACN’s relief projects in Ukraine have not only extended a helping hand to those who are most in need but have also enabled priests, religious Sisters, and lay people to attend to the spiritual and physical requirements of the faithful.