Fr Eamonn's Blog

Advice for Helping Ukraine Families locally

Offering your property or home

The situation in Ukraine is changing daily, with Bishop Richard and our diocesan central office teams actively engaged with partner organisations to discover and signpost the safest and most effective steps people, families, and parishes canundertake to help our Ukrainian brothers and sisters. Those wishing to donate financially are encouraged to give to CAFOD’s Ukraine Appeal.

To date the UK Government has announced two initiatives to support Ukrainian refugees arriving in the UK – a Ukraine Family Scheme Visa for relatives of Ukrainian people already living here, and a broader Homes for Ukraine scheme for people and families able to host refugees in their homes and properties.

Volunteers who sign up to Homes for Ukraine need to commit to being a sponsor for at least six months. Sponsors will not be able to charge rent but will be able to receive a tax-free payment of £350 a month from the UK Government. Sponsors will need to be vetted and registered with their Local Authority, with people arriving from Ukraine also passing security checks.‍

Things to consider

There are a number of things to consider if you are thinking about hosting a person or family from Ukraine:

·      Potential sponsors should examine the impact that offering a room in their home for a minimum of six months could have on their life, and what it might take to support an individual or family.

·      We recommend that potential hosts research the support that people fleeing the conflict might need and explore what is available in their area, perhaps building connections and support locally before offering to be a sponsor.

·      We strongly suggest households applying to host through the Homes for Ukraine scheme contact a local refugee action group and/or a charity that works with refugees and asylum seekers.

·      CSAN recommends the charity Reset for those wishing to be matched as a host with a refugee person or family from Ukraine – Reset already works with the Home Office on community sponsorship of refugees. You can register to be matched with a Ukrainian refugee on Reset’s website.

A further announcement on plans for churches and other charities to resettle refugees over the longer term through a new Humanitarian Sponsorship scheme is awaited, with the Diocese also exploring the possibility of housing our refugee brothers and sisters in suitable empty presbyteries.‍

Can you speak English and Ukrainian?

The Diocese is working closely with Bishop Kenneth Nowakowski, the Ukrainian Eparchial Bishop of the Holy Family Eparchy in London and is compiling a list of people across our Diocese able to speak English and Ukrainian, who are willing to volunteer their time to help people arriving in Sussex and Surrey. Ukrainian speakers are asked to contact Laura Maydew-Gale in our Communications Office with:

·      Their full name

·      Level of fluency i.e. beginner/intermediate/advanced

·      Town (to enable us to match people with arrivals in their area)

·      Capacity to volunteer i.e. one/two/three + hours per week

Please send these details to E:

A person from Ukraine might contact your parish

Parish offices are obviously very busy places. The situation in Ukraine is evolving quickly with programmes of help and government guidelines changing frequently.

If someone from Ukraine contacts the parish office and you are unsure how to help them, be as welcoming as possible and get contact details – the person’s name, current town, and telephone number/email address. These can be passed to our Communications Office in the short term so that the person can be contacted with further help and advice as, and when, we know more.‍

Additional Information

Further news and developments will be shared in thews section of thbsite and in our weekly E-Bulletin. If you don’t receive the E-Bulletin and would like to sign up, please click on this link:

·      The Diocese continues to promote CAFOD’s Ukraine Appeal to parishes and people wishing to give financially. You can give to CAFOD’s Appeal here.

·      You can access Reset’s website here: with the site also available in Ukrainian.

·      You can find out more about the Government’s Homes for Ukraine initiative here.

·      To find out about the Family Scheme Visa click on this link.‍

Fr Eamonn's Blog


This Act of Consecration is meant to be a gesture of the universal Church, which in this dramatic moment lifts up to God, through his Mother and ours, the cry of pain of all those who suffer and implore an end to the violence, and to entrust the future of our human family to the Queen of Peace.

Pope Francis

Here is the prayer of consecration so that all of us can recite it throughout that day in fraternal union.

Note: The Act of Consecration will take place in the context of a Celebration of Penance to be held in Saint Peter’s Basilica on Friday, 25 March at 4pm (UK time). The Act itself will take place about 5:30pm.


O Mary, Mother of God and our Mother, in this time of trial we turn to you. As our Mother, you love us and know us: no concern of our hearts is hidden from you. Mother of mercy, how often we have experienced your watchful care and your peaceful presence! You never cease to guide us to Jesus, the Prince of Peace.

Yet we have strayed from that path of peace. We have forgotten the lesson learned from the tragedies of the last century, the sacrifice of the millions who fell in two world wars. We have disregarded the commitments we made as a community of nations. We have betrayed peoples’ dreams of peace and the hopes of the young. We grew sick with greed, we thought only of our own nations and their interests, we grew indifferent and caught up in our selfish needs and concerns. We chose to ignore God, to be satisfied with our illusions, to grow arrogant and aggressive, to suppress innocent lives and to stockpile weapons. We stopped being our neighbour’s keepers and stewards of our common home. We have ravaged the garden of the earth with war and by our sins we have broken the heart of our heavenly Father, who desires us to be brothers and sisters. We grew indifferent to everyone and everything except ourselves. Now with shame we cry out: Forgive us, Lord!

Holy Mother, amid the misery of our sinfulness, amid our struggles and weaknesses, amid the mystery of iniquity that is evil and war, you remind us that God never abandons us, but continues to look upon us with love, ever ready to forgive us and raise us up to new life. He has given you to us and made your Immaculate Heart a refuge for the Church and for all humanity. By God’s gracious will, you are ever with us; even in the most troubled moments of our history, you are there to guide us with tender love.

We now turn to you and knock at the door of your heart. We are your beloved children. In every age you make yourself known to us, calling us to conversion. At this dark hour, help us and grant us your comfort. Say to us once more: “Am I not here, I who am your Mother?” You are able to untie the knots of our hearts and of our times. In you we place our trust. We are confident that, especially in moments of trial, you will not be deaf to our supplication and will come to our aid.

That is what you did at Cana in Galilee, when you interceded with Jesus and he worked the first of his signs. To preserve the joy of the wedding feast, you said to him: “They have no wine” (Jn 2:3). Now, O Mother, repeat those words and that prayer, for in our own day we have run out of the wine of hope, joy has fled, fraternity has faded. We have forgotten our humanity and squandered the gift of peace. We opened our hearts to violence and destructiveness. How greatly we need your maternal help!

Therefore, O Mother, hear our prayer.

Star of the Sea, do not let us be shipwrecked in the tempest of war.

Ark of the New Covenant, inspire projects and paths of reconciliation.

Queen of Heaven, restore God’s peace to the world.

Eliminate hatred and the thirst for revenge, and teach us forgiveness.

Free us from war, protect our world from the menace of nuclear weapons.

Queen of the Rosary, make us realize our need to pray and to love.

Queen of the Human Family, show people the path of fraternity.

Queen of Peace, obtain peace for our world.

O Mother, may your sorrowful plea stir our hardened hearts. May the tears you shed for us make this valley parched by our hatred blossom anew. Amid the thunder of weapons, may your prayer turn our thoughts to peace. May your maternal touch soothe those who suffer and flee from the rain of bombs. May your motherly embrace comfort those forced to leave their homes and their native land. May your Sorrowful Heart move us to compassion and inspire us to open our doors and to care for our brothers and sisters who are injured and cast aside.

Holy Mother of God, as you stood beneath the cross, Jesus, seeing the disciple at your side, said: “Behold your son” (Jn 19:26). In this way he entrusted each of us to you. To the disciple, and to each of us, he said: “Behold, your Mother” (v. 27). Mother Mary, we now desire to welcome you into our lives and our history. At this hour, a weary and distraught humanity stands with you beneath the cross, needing to entrust itself to you and, through you, to consecrate itself to Christ. The people of Ukraine and Russia, who venerate you with great love, now turn to you, even as your heart beats with compassion for them and for all those peoples decimated by war, hunger, injustice and poverty.

Therefore, Mother of God and our Mother, to your Immaculate Heart we solemnly entrust and consecrate ourselves, the Church and all humanity, especially Russia and Ukraine. Accept this act that we carry out with confidence and love. Grant that war may end and peace spread throughout the world. The “Fiat” that arose from your heart opened the doors of history to the Prince of Peace. We trust that, through your heart, peace will dawn once more. To you we consecrate the future of the whole human family, the needs and expectations of every people, the anxieties and hopes of the world.

Through your intercession, may God’s mercy be poured out on the earth and the gentle rhythm of peace return to mark our days. Our Lady of the “Fiat”, on whom the Holy Spirit descended, restore among us the harmony that comes from God. May you, our “living fountain of hope”, water the dryness of our hearts. In your womb Jesus took flesh; help us to foster the growth of communion. You once trod the streets of our world; lead us now on the paths of peace. Amen.

Fr Eamonn's Blog


Thursday March 17th a Vigil of Prayer and Adoration took place in St. March Star of the Sea Church from 6.30pm to 7.30pm to pray for peace in Ukraine.

Entrance: Sweet Sacrament Divine 674

Prayers of Adoration (leaflet)

And Moses said to the people, “Fear not, stand firm, and see the salvation of the Lord, which he will work for you today. The Lord will fight for you, and you have only to keep still, to be silent.” (Exodus 14:13-14)

Loving God, We pray for the people of Ukraine, for all those suffering or afraid, that you will be close to them and protect them. We pray for world leaders, for compassion, strength and wisdom to guide their choices. We pray for the world that in this moment of crisis, we may reach out in solidarity to our brothers and sisters in need.

May we walk in your ways so that peace and justice become a reality for the people of Ukraine and for all the world. Amen. (CAFOD)

Mysteries of Light:

Amazing Grace

Jesus said, ““Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.” (John 14:27)

Make me a channel of your peace: 478

God of peace, Show us how to put away the weapons of war

and help us destroy the tools of destruction. Lord in your Mercy, hear our prayer

God of peace, Teach us to follow the ways of justice and walk with us the paths of truth. Lord in your Mercy, hear our prayer

God of peace, Challenge the weapons of war, and banish hatred and division, so that all your children may sleep secure. Lord in your Mercy, hear our prayer