Patriarch Sviatoslav (Shevchuk) wrote his Pastoral Letter to the Faithful and Clergy On the occasion of the Renewal of the Act of Consecration of Ukraine to the Protection of the Most Holy Mother of God.
The Act of the placing of Ukraine under the Protection of the Mother of God will take place on Sunday, 6 April 2014 in all the churches of our Church in Ukraine and throughout the World. His Beatitude Sviatoslav will lead from the Patriarchal Cathedral in Kyiv; all Bishops will lead this Consecration from their Cathedral churches; and priests within their parish churches following each Divine Liturgy.The 6th of April is not a casual choice, since April 5th this year is “Akathistos Saturday” (the day during Lent when Mary is honoured) and on April 7th according to our Byzantine rite (on the Julian Calendar - widely used in the Ukrainian Church) we will celebrate the Feast of the Annunciation to the Blessed Virgin Mary.”
Patriach reminded that back in his day, the pious Prince Yaroslav the Wise (1019-1054)dedicated the people of Kyivan-Rus’ to the Protection of the Most Holy Virgin Mary. This dedication was renewed at Zarvanytsja in 1995 by Myroslav-Ivan Cardinal Lubachivsky, of blessed memory.
The UGCC Primate, is calling for this act of renewing the Consecration to the Protection of the Theotokos, because of the great tribulation that all the people and our entire country are experiencing at this time due to the occupation of part of our land – a situation that fills our hearts with anxiety for the future, uncertainty and fear.