107. Ukraine: Bearing Burdens, Bearing Witness

Fundraiser details here:  https://www.facebook.com/donate/281102717479491/We’ve been working hard to gather voices that could help us process the ongoing atrocities that the Russian government has inflicted upon the people of Ukraine. Like you, we’ve wondered what the reality is like on the ground in Ukraine right now, how we can help, and if our faith might have something to offer in terms of how we approach what’s going on, both in our hearts and with our hands.We were able to assemble a great line-up of people to help answer some of those questions for our podcast audience. We spoke to Yarsolav Chernyuk, a Church member who’s living and serving in Kyiv right now; Austin Walters, who served a mission to Ukraine and has been leading a wonderful fundraising effort for humanitarian relief; Mariya Manzhos, a Ukrainian currently living in the US who helped her parents flee from Kyiv, and Patrick Mason, a professor of history and scholar of violence and peacebuilding.Yaroslav Chernyuk is a Church member who was able to speak to us briefly from his home in Kyiv, where he is doing incredibly brave and difficult work providing aid to families in need.Austin Walters served a mission in Ukraine, and after completing an MBA at Harvard Business School, got into the world of fundraising and venture capital. He’s turned those skills, over the past few weeks, into fundraising for humanitarian efforts in Ukraine. Here’s the link if you seek to help relief efforts in Ukraine.Mariya Manzhos is a freelance journalist based in Boston, whose writing has appeared in The New York Times, The Washington Post Magazine, The Boston Globe, and other publications. She is married to Zach Davis, a member of the Faith Matters executive team. At the time we spoke with her, her parents were en route to the United States after fleeing their home in Kyiv; you’ll hear her speak a little about this journey. Thankfully, we can update you now to let you know that her parents have arrived safely and are with Mariya’s family in Boston.We brought our friend Patrick Mason into the conversation to help us think through some of the philosophy and theology of war and conflict. Many of us have had our easy notions about peace and violence challenged in the face of such naked aggression. We explore what the scriptures and the Gospel of Jesus Christ have to say about this situation.To all of our Ukrainian brothers and sisters: we see you, we hear you, we’re praying for you, and we’re doing our best to bear this burden with you. Join us for Restore: A Faith Matters Gathering on October 7-8 in Salt Lake City. Learn more and register here.

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Faith Matters offers an expansive view of the Restored Gospel, thoughtful exploration of big and sometimes thorny questions, and a platform that encourages deeper engagement with our faith and our world.We focus on the Latter-day Saint (Mormon) tradition, but believe we have much to learn from other traditions and fully embrace those of other beliefs.