14 December 2022
A Port Melbourne church is hoping the efforts of child parishioners will help spark a little Christmas hope and joy for children in Ukraine.
Holy Trinity Anglican has invited young people to create artwork and messages of hope for their counterparts in the war-torn country.
Locum the Right Reverend Philip Huggins said he encouraged his young congregants to draw colourful scenes of the nativity, and older ones to pen messages of support as a gesture of affection.
Bishop Huggins said the idea had come from a conversation he’d had with a Ukrainian friend during his travels for the United Nations’ Climate Change Conference in November.
“With Putin’s troops bombing some Ukraine power stations and water facilities, things are bleak for the people and children, so anything that could be done to give a them a bit of good cheer would be good,” he said.
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He is also inviting young people and families from other Anglican parishes to contribute nativity artwork and support messages to Holy Trinity.
Bishop Huggins said all the material would be put together in a collage and sent by email to his connection in Lviv to share with children in Kyiv and other cities.
In the past year Holy Trinity’s parishioners participated in a number of prayer days for peace, including online prayer and meditation for the people of Ukraine, and helped raise money for various appeals to support their humanitarian needs, he said.
Russia invaded Ukraine in February, leading to thousands of casualties and the displacement of millions of Ukrainians, while also impeding the food security and energy resources of countries across the globe.
Several organisations have called for a ceasefire, including the International Peace Bureau which in recent weeks has begun petitioning for a Christmas truce akin to one that took place during World War One.
Youths who would like to participate in Holy Trinity’s Ukraine Christmas message effort, will need to email their creations by Christmas Eve to Bishop Huggins at email@example.com.