UKRAINE cannot be rebuilt unless spirituality is rebuilt, the
Acting President of Ukraine, Oleksandr Turchyno, said on
Speaking at a meeting of denominational leaders, Mr Turchyno, a
Baptist pastor, expressed gratitude towards the clergy and laity
who ministered in Independence Square at the height of last week's
"The word of God was heard in Independence Square," he said,
"and clergy carried on praying with people, even when the next
bullet whistled past." He blamed the atrocities on "a lack of
spirituality". The Churches had to "restore spirituality", he said,
because "to restore faith means to restore Ukraine."
"People need to hear 'Thou shalt not kill': this applies not
only to the Berkut [a militia-style police force]: it applies to
everyone. 'Thou shalt not steal': this applies not only to
Yanukovych: it applies to all of us."
The whereabouts of the former President, Victor Yanukovych, was
unknown as the Church Times went to press. He was
impeached by the country's parliament on Saturday, and a warrant
has been issued for his arrest on charges of the "mass murder of
The protests started last November, after the pro-Russian Mr
Yanukovych vetoed a Ukrainian/EU trade deal. They culminated in
last week's serious disturbances in Independence Square, when a
trade-union building was set alight; and live rounds were fired on
The British Foreign Secretary, William Hague, told MPs on Monday
that it was "the worst bloodshed in Ukraine since the fall of
He said that Ukraine now had "a pressing need for constitutional
reform, improvements to its political culture, free elections, an
end to pervasive corruption, and the building of a stable political
structure. We look to the new government to create the conditions
for such change in a spirit of reconciliation while ensuring
accountability for human-rights violations."
Mr Hague, who will visit Kiev shortly, said that Britain's
fundamental interests in the Ukraine were "democracy, human rights,
and the rule of law".
The number of deaths is believed to exceed 100. There are 85
confirmed and identified dead; but many people remain missing, and
the remains of burnt bodies are still being retrieved from the
"No one is able to assume how many badly wounded people have
burnt alive there when the Berkut came to the building, shut off
the water, and set it on fire," Alla Gedz, a member of the
congregation of Christ Church Anglican Church in Kiev, said.
An internationally brokered truce took effect last Friday,
described by Mrs Gedz as "the first day of grief". She said: "The
whole country was in mourning. Thousands of people filled streets
and cried together with those who had lost beloved ones. Funerals
were everywhere. It was my husband's birthday, but I couldn't stop
crying together with mothers and relatives of the murdered - God's
created precious ones.
"The centre or Kiev is full of flowers and candles. Those people
who can't come during the day come at night, bringing flowers and
candles in remembrance of those who shed blood.
"Funerals have been taking place since Friday; and mortuaries
still have the dead and are looking for relatives who can take
Christ Church is currently without a permanent priest. A retired
Scottish Episcopalian priest, the Revd Stuart Robertson, will go to
Kiev next month to take services for three weeks leading up to
Easter. A lack of money and candidates was preventing the diocese
in Europe from appointing a permanent chaplain, the Archdeacon of
the East, the Ven. Patrick Curran, said.
"It is a very small congregation, but very faithful. We're
looking for somebody who has a vision to be the leader of an
Anglican community in Kiev...It would have to be an extraordinary
person who would want to do that...It wouldn't be an easy