Archpriest Maxim (Bykov)

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Glory to Jesus Christ!

Today we speak a lot about the situation in Ukraine, especially about Russia military incursion into Crimea.

I would like to warn you not to hate Russians. I communicate with the help of skype and elsewise with people who live in Russia. I know that they support us. They are normal people. And there are a lot of such people. I understand that they are not allowed to speak, are not allowed to open they hearts, because of their legislative branch. They are not ready for truthful work in Mass-Media, not ready to change the regime, as we did it in Ukraine. But there are kind people in Russia.

Therefore, I ask you, not to speak that Russians are bad, that Russia is bad. Not all the people are bad, there is just a small percent of those people who hate Ukraine, or has other feelings. As a whole, they are normal people. We should not hate them.

But we have to be wise. Great Lent begins, and there are difficult moments. It is necessary to prepare for the feast, it is necessary to be able to forgive. But you should forgive wisely. In what way? It should not be in the way that you forgive a person, and he/she betrays you immediately…It is necessary to be wise, you should forgive in such way that not to hate that man, you should forgive, but be wise and careful; because you know that this person can do you a mischief again. But you understand that the hatred will harm your soul, will harm your heart, and will not give peace to you. Each person wants to live in peace, to open his/her heart to other people.

Therefore, it is necessary to be wise. If you have not enough wisdom, you can ask God for help: "God, give me Your wisdom, give me Your wise love, give it to me. Help me to forgive as you forgive - with Your wisdom. Help me to pass this examination". And the Lord will give wisdom and help in difficult moments of your life.

Today we also have to pray sincerely. I understand that nowadays the majority of us do not know what to do in this situation. And again, we can appeal to God: "I do not know that to do, God, tell me, what I should do. Let there will be Your will, but not my. Because my will is far from you. Help me to pass this examination, so as you want. Not so as I want, but as you want. God, bless me". With such prayers we must live, hope, believe, and love.

But the main idea that I wanted to say, that you should stay human no matter what. In any war, or in any difficult situation, we always must stay human. Human is the main element of the state, it is a part of nation. Therefore, we should stay human, who will give a helping hand, who will say right words, who will support. It is very important. I hope that we will stay human no matter what.

May God save you!