Global Women’s Peace and Harmony Conference in Ukraine
“Universal Values as a Cornerstone of Global Peace and Harmony”
By WFWP Austria, Katharina Bauer: “On Saturday 23 April, I went to Ukraine, a trip I was looking forward to for the last 2 months. As soon as I stepped off the plane in Ukraine, I received the warmest welcome by the Ukrainian members. From the beginning on, it was also perfectly organized. While there, I heard the most beautiful, touching and wise explanation of Vision 2020: it’s the time when we learn how to let go of our selfishness and learn to lead a happy and fulfilling life of living for others through uniting with God’s heart. This is the essence and sense of the whole week I was in Ukraine and for my whole life.
Monday was for sightseeing, so that we could see all the historical places as well as how things were developing in Maidan and Kiev, in general. We went to beautiful, old churches with their roofs shining with gold to the sky, we walked through the streets where the first Christians were witnessing, historical places with young and old memories of the nation. We walked through the squares and streets, where just two years ago huge tents stood full of protestors from Ukraine and all over the world. We could still see bullet holes through the thick, iron lampposts. How strong the bullets were to leave such holes. Our tour stopped to pray by the photos of the “Heavenly Hundred” who were shot in the demonstrations. There is a chapel, close to Maidan, where many people lost their lives, where we can come to pray and cry. This is a special, “all religions” chapel. Maybe the first in the world of this type. The tents are now gone, and the streets are breathing, welcoming the sunshine onto the flowers growing there. I felt freedom and peace.
I am grateful that the community in Kiev organized this for us. The next day, 26 April, was the 30th Anniversary of the Chernobyl disaster. In the early morning, we went to a place in Kiev where memorials of the victims stand. Because WFWP Ukraine actively take care of the children, who are victims of the Chernobyl disaster, our representatives were invited officially to offer flowers and pray next to the Ukrainian President, the Mayor of Kiev and other politicians. The weather on this day was extremely cold and windy. In fact, the skies are crying every year on 26 April. The Ukrainian president rang a bell in remembrance as the nation offered a prayer exactly at 10 o’clock.
Wednesday, 27 April, the Kiev City Hall hosted a round table with politicians and NGO’s. This was organized together with WFWP Ukraine under the title “Women, Peace, Security.” This topic is especially relevant for this nation nowadays. I, along with Angelika Selle, WFWP International, Tina Coombs, WFWP Europe, and Tatiana Kotseba, WFWP Ukraine, gave inspiring and essential speeches on the subject. I felt very grateful to these wonderful sisters, who made such a long journey to support WFWP Ukraine in this excellent and important work.
The main event for WFWP was the Global Women’s Peace Network Conference on “Universal Values as a Cornerstone of Global Peace and Harmony,” on 28 April. With 500 in attendance, 70 were current WFWP members, and the rest were partners and friends. The conference was an opportunity to honour cultural activities such as the arts and sports in Ukraine. It was successful in inspiring more local branches of WFWP to be founded in at least three areas.
I was so impressed by the numbers and quality of VIPs that the Ukrainian sisters are working with. These are deep, personal, warm connections. Like Angelika said, they all have such a motherly heart. I am proud to be a woman when I listen to them. Tatiana, Anna, Dascha, and many others are doing such a great job and working so hard to improve life in Ukraine. They reach out to the world level and are welcomed and have become important members of the International Women’s Council. The conference was amazing. I am so inspired through this event, and grateful for being invited, I can just admire them and learn from these amazing sisters and the amazing Ukrainian community. I share this inspiring experience to encourage more of our WFWP sisters to come and get to know the sisters in WFWP Ukraine and experience this event. I feel that their work is how we all could and should be working.
Dear sisters, dear friends, come, experience the love, and support the excellent, valuable work of our Ukrainian sisters on the national and international level. I feel that God is happy to watch them. Thank you very much. I wish you all the best and send the warmest greetings from Austria.