VII Ecumenical Social Week
"Responsibility of a Christian in Modern Society"
Lviv, September 29 - October 4, 2014

From September 29 to October 4, in Lviv was held the VII Ecumenical Social Week, initiated by the Institute of Ecumenical Studies. The Week was held with the support of the Ukrainian Catholic University, National University "Lviv Polytechnic", Lviv Regional State Administration, Lviv Regional Council and the Lviv City Council. Representatives of churches, NGOs, the media, politicians, scientists, educators and young people gathered at the Forum to discuss the challenges, which Ukrainian society is facing after the Revolution of Dignity, and in severe conditions of the Ukrainian state defense. The theme of this year's Forum - "Responsibility of a Christian in Modern Society." After the removal of authoritarian government, Ukrainian state defends its integrity and sovereignty at the war. Thousands of Ukrainians defend independence with weapons in their arms, residents of peaceful regions advocate the need to reform the state. In a difficult time of forming the new society, appears the necessity for every Ukrainian to realize their own responsibility before God, country and fellow citizens. The aim of the VII ESW was to declare principle of separation of responsibility for the future of the state between society and the selected power.
Feeling responsible for the fate of the Ukrainian state and trying to contribute to building a peaceful European space, the participants of the VII ESW appealed to the authorities, Churches, NGOs and all people of good will with this resolution:

"We appeal to all the faithful of the Ukrainian Churches:
 to realize one’s responsibility before God for the Ukrainian state and for every citizen of this society, granted by him;
 not to sow seeds of discord, false propaganda but to seek truth and new ways of reconciliation and healing the wounds, to become peacebearers in situations, where is present conflict and misunderstanding;
 to contribute to the further development of the institute of military chaplaincy to ensure better pastoral care of the military and their families;
 to be open to fruitful ecumenical cooperation for more effective serving for the benefit of the Ukrainian people.
Events of Maidan showed great authority, that Ukrainians reveal to the Church and Christian values, as well as with a new force proved their great desire for reconciliation within the Christian community. The need for interfaith dialogue and the restoration of Christian unity becomes an imperative, as the participants of the Second Vatican Council noted, when the Church opens its nature in a new way, the need for unity of all Christians for common witnessing to the world about Christ, when the need of joint service to society and its segments, which need it the most arises, when the Christians need to give a joint response to the most pressing challenges of the present time. The broad inter-Christian dialogue, which would attract the faithful and the Church leaders, could have been able to respond to these expectations and put a solid foundation for building a renewed Ukrainian society.

Taking into account the recent events in Ukrainian society in 2013-2014 (Revolution of Dignity), in view of the positive experience of operation of the local commissions on Orthodox-Catholic theological dialogue in the USA and France, and feeling the urgent need to initiate this dialogue in Ukraine, the members of the Ukrainian Christian Academic Society appeal to the Primates of the Ukrainian Churches, asking to bless the creation of mixed commission for Orthodox-Catholic theological dialogue in Ukraine.

We appeal to the Ukrainian authorities and politicians:
 to realize and accept personal responsibility before God and history for the future of Ukrainian state and its people;
 taking all possible legitimate means, to protect the Ukrainian country from the military aggressive actions; to ensure the Ukrainian military personnel with appropriate support; to develop the Armed Forces of Ukraine for protecting the stable development of democracy in Ukraine;
 to prevent information aggression on the part of foreign states and ensure the implementation of the National Security and Defence Council’s resolution "On Measures on improvement and implementation of state policy in the field of information security of Ukraine" on the legislative and executive levels;
 to promote the creation of a number of public service broadcasting channels, which will be able objectively and impartially inform the public and meet the challenges of modern information warfare;
 in order to protect democratic values and the rule of law and human rights in Ukraine, given the demands of time, to ensure fulfillment of the Law of Ukraine "On cleaning of power" № 1682-18 from 16.09.2014, adopted by the Parlament of Ukraine;
 to the Parlament of Ukraine - to enforce the law "On the National Anti-Corruption Bureau of Ukraine" № 1698-18 from 10.14.2014 and promote the establishment of the unbiased National Anti-Corruption Bureau.
We appeal to the media representatives:
 to counteract the false information propaganda, which, as we have seen, can be a source of hatred, anger and discord in the country;
 to respect the right of the society to receive truthful, verified and unbiased information;
 to remember about the personal responsibility of every journalist to the Ukrainian society, especially, in terms of the undeclared war, when on the accuracy of formulations may depend human life;
 to observe Christian, moral and ethical standards and laws of Ukraine in the work;
 not to spread extremist, racist or discriminatory calls;
 to contribute to the raising of the level of public confidence in the media, thanks to objective and unbiased coverage of events;
 to contribute to equal access of all citizens of Ukraine to information resources, raising of the level of media literacy of the society, and to inform the public about the dangers of information warfare;
 to promote the creation of public supervisory boards, which will be able to monitor the media and will contribute to their work;
 to contribute to maximum increase of the national media product by lobbying government programs (resumption of lost production of the programs for children, teenagers, educational, cognitive, scientific, programs of classical, national music, national cinema, etc.);
 with the state support to create new media to inform about the situation in Ukraine in the international information space.

We appeal to the NGO representatives:
 to contribute to the strengthening of local communities and joint working out the effective mechanisms of influence on the authorities to address issues of public importance;
 to be on guard of the authorities’ observance of democratic values in our society;
 to control the authorities regarding the transparency of decision-making;
 by all means, to avoid temptation by the authorities to resort to the use of authoritarian methods of governance;
 to expose populist tendencies of the authorities and individual politicians;
 we ask to control the authorities constantly, not only in the moments of maximum mobilization of the people. "

Members of the Expert Council of the VII Ecumenical Social Week "Responsibility of a Christian in Modern Society" appeal to the authorities, business, NGOs, educators and the Primates of the Ukrainian Churches to support this resolution and to work in good faith on its successful implementation.


Authorized representatives of the VII ESW’s Expert Council:

Ukrainian Catholic University;

Institute of Ecumenical Studies at UCU;

Lviv City Council;

Lviv Regional Council;

Lviv Regional State Administration.