European Protestant churches condemn Russian attack on Ukraine

Last Updated on 18 March 2022 by Catherine Kelliher

The Communion of Protestant Churches in Europe (CPCE) has condemned the Russian Federation’s attack on Ukraine as a “breach of international law and a violation of human rights”, as well as expressing its support for all suffering because of the conflict.

The statement, issued on March 18, comes from the communion of 94 Lutheran, Methodist, Reformed and United churches from more than thirty countries in Europe and South America, including member churches in Ukraine and Russia, representing about 50 million people, for whom United Reformed Church General Secretary, the Revd Dr John P Bradbury, serves as co-President.

The CPEC statement said: “We stand together with all people suffering unbearable hardship in Ukraine. We do so in a threefold way: we pray, we speak out, and we help.

“Together, we pray, lament and lift up the people of Ukraine to the God of peace and justice. In prayer, we are able to articulate the horror and dread we feel as our continent is again torn apart by war.

“We speak out in condemnation of the breach of international law by Russia’s president Putin as we stand in solidarity with all sisters and brothers who work for peace and reconciliation.

“We help by giving according to our means to support all who suffer in terms of finance, goods, logistics and assistance to integrate in their new communities. We offer hospitality to those fleeing the atrocities of the war, as church communities and individuals.”

“As churches, we are called to speak out against injustice and suffering and to speak on behalf of those who cannot speak (Proverbs 31:8). In the light of our responsibility before God, our fellow humans and creation, CPCE condemns the Russian Federation’s unilateral attack on the sovereign state of Ukraine as a breach of international law and a violation of human rights.”


The statement was issued alongside a prayer:


A Prayer for Peace

God Almighty – you are God of peace and justice.
We pray for our sisters and brothers in Ukraine,
and all places suffering because of war.
As we cry out to you in anger and anguish, we pray that peace will reign, and justice prevail.
Kyrie eleison. Lord, have mercy on us.

Jesus Christ – you are the Prince of Peace.
We pray that arms will be silent.
We pray for those who have the power over peace and war.
Grant them wisdom and compassion in their decisions and lead them on the path of peace.
Kyrie eleison. Lord, have mercy on us.

Spirit of Truth and Comfort – you have the power to heal and reconcile.
We pray for those, who have lost loved ones, their homes,
who are in dire need of food, drink, sleep, safety.
We pray that you keep your children safe.
And we pray that you may grant us discernment, open hearts and ready hands to assist those in need.
Kyrie eleison. Lord, have mercy on us.

The statement concluded: “As this war prompts new reflections on issues of security, defence and cooperation in Europe, we commit to participating in this process, not least through our engagement in reconciliation in Ukraine and beyond.”

For the full statement visit


Photo (GAW Leipzig): Charkiw/Ukraine, published 9 March 2022.