A cross party group of MPs and peers visited the Ukrainian Catholic Cathedral in London this week to see firsthand the support being provided to people displaced by the war in Ukraine.
The visit was organised by the All-Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) on the Holy See with the support of the Catholic Union.
The group of twelve parliamentarians visited the Cathedral near Bond Street in London on 28 November. The Cathedral has become a focal point for efforts to support Ukrainians who have come to Britain since the full-scale invasion of their country began in February last year.
Bishop Kenneth Nowakowski, Eparchial Bishop of the Ukrainian Catholic Eparchy of the Holy Family of London, welcomed the group to the Cathedral. He showed them the Welcome Centre which has been set up to provide help to Ukrainian families – including access to computers, a play area for children, and a place to cook and eat together.
The group, which included the Lord Speaker, Lord McFall, also had a private meeting with Bishop Nowakowski to discuss the latest developments in Ukraine and what more the UK Government can do to help.
Earlier this year, the Catholic Union welcomed Bishop Nowakowski to Parliament for a meeting with the APPG in Westminster. The visit to the Cathedral was a return invitation offered by Bishop Nowakowski and taken up by the group’s Chairman, Alexander Stafford MP.
The Catholic Union will continue to support parliamentarians in their efforts to keep the conflict in Ukraine on the agenda at Westminster as the country faces its second Christmas under invasion.
Online donations to support the Ukrainian Welcome Centre can be made on their website here.
Bishop Kenneth Nowakowski comments: “It was a great joy to welcome MPs and members of the House of Lords to the Cathedral. Visits like this help to remind our politicians of the impact this terrible war is having on people’s lives and the need to support the Ukrainian people. I appreciated the opportunity to pray with the group and to thank them for their continued support. Sadly, you do not need to look far beyond Ukraine to see other parts of the world where peace is badly needed. My message is simply – please do not forget Ukraine. We will need your prayers and support all the more as another year of this conflict approaches.”
Catholic Union Deputy Director, James Somerville-Meikle comments: “We are extremely grateful to Bishop Kenneth and the team at the Cathedral for making this visit possible. As this terrible conflict continues, we must not forget the people of Ukraine and those who are helping them. The work of the Cathedral and the Welcome Centre shows the Church at its best – providing a place of prayer and practical support to those seeking refuge. Thanks to all MPs and peers who took part in the visit and helped to promote this brilliant work.”