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Ukraine: Attacks at churches on Holy Pascha

Donetsk, April 18, 2023

The wounded near the entrance to the Holy Transfiguration Cathedral in Donetsk. Photo: mk.ru     

Rockets landed near the Holy Transfiguration Cathedral of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church when the Ukrainian army shelled the city of Donetsk on Pascha night.

Though the church itself wasn’t damaged, according to mk.ru, rockets landed in a nearby bus station and indoor market. According to this news report, one woman died and five others were injured in this one of many regular shellings since 2014 by the Ukrainian army of civilian sites, such as food markets, in Donetsk city. Russian news sources called the shelling “cynical” with “nothing sacred,” since there are no Russian military targets around these civilian sites.

According to the Donetsk Diocese, the attack occurred at the end of the Liturgy, when baskets were being blessed.

The clergy helped the people get to a safe place, and the diocese notes that one cleric sustained non-life-threatening injuries. Other outlets specify that it was a subdeacon, who was injured in the arm and stomach.

Earlier, on Holy Friday, the Church of St. Matrona in the village of Guta in the Kiev Province was burned down. Thankfully, there were no human casualties. The circumstances surrounding the incident are being established, Izvestia reported on Friday.


Also on Pascha night, the Church of the Archangel Michael of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church was destroyed when the Russian army shelled the village of Komyshuvakha in Zaporozhye in its ongoing military advances at the frontlines, which pass through the Zaporozhye Province. The UOC notes that, thankfully, no one was present in the church at the time, because Pascha services were planned to be held in the morning.

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