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From Ethnic Ministries Circles of Color:

We, as the Circles of Color in the Diocese of Olympia, renounce the acts of violence and war in Ukraine and stand with the many around the world who call upon Russian President Vladimir Putin to cease and withdraw Russian military presence. We raise our prayers for peace in Ukraine and for safety for all those affected in the region: soldiers on both sides, civilians, children and refugees. We pray that the aggressors may have a change of heart and realize that we are all children of one God and members of one human family. Especially we call on the Russian military to comply with international humanitarian norms and avoid targeting hospitals, schools and child-care centers, along with other civilian targets. As Archbishop Oscar Romero said to soldiers in his country, “You are killing your own…brothers. The law of God –‘Thou Shall Not Kill’ — must prevail over an order to kill that a man may give. In the name of God and the name of this suffering people, whose cries rise up to heaven, I implore you, I beg of you, I order you in the name of God: stop the repression.”

We pray for strength for all who are seeing their homes destroyed and for consolation for those who have lost family and loved ones in this war. We particularly stand in solidarity and love with members of the Ukrainian and Russian churches who are witnessing to God’s love in the midst of this conflict, including St. Andrew’s Anglican Church in Moscow and Christ Church, Church of England, Kyiv. We also pray for members of our local congregations and communities, who have family and friends in Ukraine, or who have family and friends serving in the armed forces who may be drawn into this conflict.

As Circles of Color, we are aware that our prayers are needed every day for people in Ethiopia, Yemen, Palestine, Israel, Mexico, Haiti and other areas where violence rages. While not diminishing our concern for the situation in Ukraine, we note that on-going tragic violence and its consequences in areas of the world populated by non-European people of color do not receive the same level of attention by dominant culture media that this white European conflict has generated. We also pray that in the midst of the fear and chaos of this war, that racial divisions do not divide the people of Ukraine, and that they and we may be united in our work for peace for all of God’s children.

We urge you to pray, to not be misled by divisive false media reporting, and to donate as you are able to the organizations listed below:

Episcopal Relief and Development:

World Central Kitchen:

Amnesty International:

UN High Commission for Refugees:

A Statement on the Russian Invasion of Ukraine by Ethnic Ministries Circles of Color

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