“In the city, there were many soldiers, Ukrainian soldiers,” Grynevych said.
“I saw a lot of cars that were destructed by bombs,” he said.
Caritas-Spes, the organization he leads, is also supporting people who have gathered at Ukraine’s western border, providing temporary housing in shelters.
He said that Caritas-Spes has the capacity to help shelter 400 children. The organization has already accepted 200 children as of yesterday.
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“We are equipped with shelters in five cities, one of which is in a children’s hospital for pregnant women, women who just delivered, and children,” he said.
Caritas-Spes, operated by Ukraine’s Latin Rite Catholic Church, is one of two organizations affiliated with Caritas Internationalis in Ukraine. The other, Caritas Ukraine, is overseen by the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church, to which the majority of Ukrainian Catholics belong.
Caritas Internationalis has launched an emergency appeal to provide relief to Ukraine after Russia launched the full-scale invasion on Feb. 24. Donations can be made on its website.
“We understand that these are only the first days of a terrible war, which is like a terrible dream that has enwrapped our society,” Grynevych said.
Courtney Mares is a Rome Correspondent for Catholic News Agency. A graduate of Harvard University, she has reported from news bureaus on three continents and was awarded the Gardner Fellowship for her work with North Korean refugees.