We stand with Ukraine

Reading Time: 2 minutes
Catholic Cemeteries and Crematoria Chairman Greg Smith SC presents a cheque for $20,000 to Fr Simon Ckuj. Photo: Catholic Cemeteries

Catholic Cemeteries back aid effort

Catholic Cemeteries and Crematoria have donated $20,000 to Caritas’ appeal for Ukraine.

Chairman of Catholic Metropolitan Cemeteries Trust,  Mr Greg Smith SC made the donation following a special twilight prayer service for Ukraine held at the Mary, Mother of Mercy Chapel in Rookwood Catholic Cemetery on 8 April led by Vicar General of the Ukrainian Catholic eparchy, Fr Simon Ckuj.

The cemetery has been the preferred burial location for many Eastern European Catholics since post-WW2 immigration brought many families to settle in Sydney.

Rookwood currently has more than 6300 members of the Eastern European community laid to rest within its grounds, including over 2000 Ukrainians interred within three dedicated burial areas.

On 6 March Catholic Cemeteries CEO Peter O’Meara attended a special Mass at St Andrew’s Ukrainian Catholic Church, Lidcombe, co-celebrated by Fr Ckuj and Archbishop Anthony Fisher OP.

Since this time, CCC has worked in consultation with Fr Ckuj on how it can support the Ukrainian community.

CCC representatives and members of the Grief Care Team coordinated the moving prayer service last week, and CCC is also in the process of developing an onsite memorial at Rookwood for those that have lost their lives in the Ukrainian conflict.

The humanitarian crisis in Ukraine continues to escalate, with more than 10 million people, nearly a quarter of Ukraine’s population, now displaced.

Donetska and Luhanska Oblasts are the current epicentres of the unfolding humanitarian emergency, with reports of food warehouses being attacked.

Fuel shortages and the scarcity of available drivers and trucks has made transporting food around the country increasingly difficult, and major ports, railways and airports have also been affected.

In the city of Chernihiv, constant shelling is leaving an estimated 130,000 people without electricity, heating and gas, and clean drinking water is running low. A number of hospitals, health facilities and residential areas in Ukraine have also been targeted.

Donate to Caritas’ humanitarian appeal for Ukraine at www.caritas.org.au

Related:

United for Ukraine
Entrusting the world to Mary’s intercession, Pope Francis consecrates Ukraine, Russia