Dear members of the United States Congress, Members of Verkhovna Rada,Ukrainian fellows and our American friends,Ladies and Gentlemen,
I would like to thank the organizers of the Ukrainian Prayer Breakfast, who following a great American tradition to share a morning meal to praise God, have gathered us today for a prayer.
I am sure, that yesterday many of you at the Prayers Breakfast with President Barack Obama, US Congress representatives, leaders of thought and thousands of Americans have witnessed that it is “In God that America Trusts”.
It is the faith in God, in his commandments and Christian values like truth, mercy and tolerance that have made this country – the Strategic Partner of Ukraine – so great.
And these are the values that are embedded in the Ukrainian national code, in our thousands years of history and, I believe, these are what we all share in our souls.
I am sure that today we have all come united in a same prayer. As there is nothing more profoundly important for a nation and its people than peace.
There is no greater desire of each and every one of us than to stop mourning thousands of our brave soldiers and innocent civilians - men, women and children - who perished in this war waged against Ukraine by Russia.
However, we are brave, we are committed and we believe in mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ.
In the Gospel according to Matthew, Jesus tells the soldiers “Put your sword back in its place - for all who draw the sword will die by the sword.”
There is no bigger dream than to hear no cannons, to see the aggressor ousted, to have all our brothers and sisters, including Nadiya Savchenko, Oleg Sentsov, Oleksandr Kolchenko and all of our fellow Ukrainians kept in Russian prisons and in Donbas cellars back with us in good health.
I want to thank the United States for treatment and rehabilitation of our wounded heroes. This is a great gesture of support, empathy and kindness of the American people.
We dream and pray to see our once peaceful Ukraine reintegrated.
Dear Ladies and Gentlemen,
Ukraine has gone through long and tragic history that calls for broad international recognition and reconciliation.
I am very proud that last November, here in the capital of the United States, I led the final effort to unveil a Memorial to millions of Holodomor victims that were deliberately starved to death by the regime of Stalin in 1932-33.
We will never stop praying for their souls and will keep asking God that the atrocity of this kind will never ever happen anywhere again.
This year Ukraine will continue its effort for restoration of the historic truth and reconciliation, when in November we will commemorate hundreds thousands of innocent victims of Babyn Yar.
75 years ago, it has become one of the most tragic pages in history of the Jewish, Ukrainian, Roma and many other peoples.
It is our duty to raise our prayers to God and to beg that there never will be a single drop of blood, a single word of hatred, a single violent clash on our land.
And that there is more kindness and tolerance in everyone’s life in this world.
Yesterday, at the Prayers Breakfast President Obama reminded us that the challenges that we face today are not unique.
The President said: “the threats of previous eras -- civil war or world war or cold war, depressions or famines -- those challenges put our own in perspective”.
But saying so, Barack Obama believes that unique strengths of his nation make it better equipped than others to harness this change to work for his country, rather than against it.
I believe, this is just exactly the way Ukraine has reinvented itself throughout its often tragic and turbulent years of the modern history.
We have grown into a strong nation, often starting from a clean slate, learning from scratch and is mobilized to stand up to external and internal challenges.
Let us keep our faith, let us pray and we will spare no effort until we bring peace to our land, until we reach reconciliation and build better future for our children.
І на оновленій землі Врага не буде, супостата, А буде син і буде мати, І будуть люди на землі.
- Taras Shevchenko, a prophet of Ukraine