Archbishop of Canterbury returns to Ukraine


The Most Revd Justin Welby, Archbishop of Canterbury, on board a train from Warsaw to Chelm on his way to Ukraine for a five-day visit. Photo: Lambeth Palace, 5 February 2024. Lambeth Palace

The Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, has arrived in Ukraine at the start of a five-day visit as the country prepares to mark the second anniversary of the Russian full-scale invasion.

He will spend time in the capital, Kyiv, and elsewhere in meetings and visits with a focus on prayer, listening and learning and offering solidarity with the people and churches of Ukraine.

As well as strengthening relationships with churches, he will see the personal impact of the war first-hand and seek to understand the current humanitarian needs, two years on from the events of February 2022.

Archbishop Justin, who previously visited Ukraine in December of that year, will begin the visit by spending time with the congregation of Christ Church, Kyiv, the small Anglican church in the city.  

Speaking as he arrived in the country, Archbishop Justin said: “I am here to stand with our sisters and brothers in Christ in Ukraine.

“I want to pray with and for them, learn from them and to say loud and clear that, amid all that is going on in other places, the world will not forget Ukraine.

“It is now almost two full years since that dreadful day of the full-scale Russian invasion – an act of great evil – and we know that that the need for support is going to be very long term.

“It was profoundly moving and humbling to meet people here in late 2022; to see first-hand the heroism of people who have been through hell.

“It has stayed with me and I felt a deep call to return.”

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