Poroshenko Pays Respect to the Heavenly Hundred Heroes
Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko paid his respects to the Heavenly Hundred Heroes while on a working visit to the United States
Photo Mikhail Palinchak
While in the United States on a working trip, Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko took part in the memorial service to the deceased Heroes of the Heavenly Hundred of the Maidan Revolution. The prayer was conducted by Primate of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church in the United States Metropolitan Antony and Archbishop Daniel in St. Andrew Memorial Church of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church in South Bound Brook, New Jersey.
Poroshenko remarked that the days from February 18 to February 21 had entered the history of Ukraine forever, when five years ago, pursuant to the criminal order of the former authorities, Berkut officers opened fire with live ammunition killing 78 people.
“What did our heroes give life for? The Revolution of Dignity began in November 2013 because of a very simple reason – Ukraine no longer wanted to live under the Soviet or Russian yoke. The Ukrainian people sought to return to the European family of nations. And it united us. Why were we winning all these five years? Because the nation was united,” Poroshenko said.
“What did the heroes, who gave their lives, strive for? They loved Ukraine very much, they loved Ukrainians very much. And that is why it is so important for us to always remember this, to pray, to value the great responsibility they put upon us with their death. So that we do not waste time. So that we never allow to destroy our unity. So that we know where we are going and win on this path,” Poroshenko added.
Photo Mikhail Palinchak
He stressed that Ukrainians had undergone tremendous challenges – revolution, aggression against Ukraine and annexation of Crimea.
“This very date (February 20, 2014 – ed.) was scratched on Russian medals distributed to the Russians and collaborators in honor of the Crimean occupation.”
He emphasized, that over the past 5 years, Ukraine had been re-established, because genuine independence had been gained not only in 1991, but also in 2014. In addition, Ukraine managed to build a spiritual foundation by obtaining autocephaly for the Orthodox Church of Ukraine.
“I want us today to pray for the Heroes of the Heavenly Hundred and pay tribute to those who gave their lives for freedom and independence of Ukraine. Ukrainians are such a nation that can never live without freedom,” he said.
He also thanked Ukrainian soldiers, who are now defending Ukraine at the front, rebuffing the Russian aggressor, as well as Ukrainians of the United States for a joint prayer and daily prayers for Ukraine.
Metropolitan Antony called for prayer for Ukraine.
“The world should know that the generations of Ukrainians remember that heroes do not die […] They continue to live in the memory of the nation and be an example for future heroes who make history,” he said. The Metropolitan urged everyone to remember this heroism.
“These fallen heroes appeal to all of us – nobody can torment us with hunger or other terror anymore. Despite all the attempts to wipe Ukrainians off the map, Ukrainian self-identity has been preserved in the hearts and minds of the Ukrainian people. It has always been an impetus for the revival of the nation. Heroes do not die!” Metropolitan Antony said.
He thanked the President of Ukraine for his efforts to protect and develop Ukraine.
“When five years after the tragedy on Maidan, aggression and suffering, I visit Ukraine, I see many positive changes under your leadership. Thank you for your leadership,” the Metropolitan emphasized.
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