The most significant event of the year under review was Russia’s attack on Ukraine on 24 February 2022. This war has also had an enormous impact on both the work of the Church and our organisation; since it began, the main priority in Ukraine has simply been to survive. Immediately after the war began, many monasteries and church parishes opened their buildings to refugees and people in need. Consequently, ACN promptly made sure that help was on its way to the local Church.
Prior to the war, our aid efforts for the churches in Eastern Europe were primarily centred around eliminating the effects of communism and coping with the pandemic. For the Church in Ukraine, however, the situation has become much more dire since the war began. In addition to the destruction of buildings and infrastructure and the large number of refugees seeking help from the Church, sharp price increases, especially for energy, have also been a major challenge for church parishes and monasteries.
The Church in Ukraine is currently facing immense challenges due to the war.
In total, we supported the Church in Ukraine with 9.5 million euros in 2022. But the Catholic Church is also in urgent need of help in other parts of Eastern Europe, especially where it is in the minority, such as in Russia. Here, providing subsistence help for religious and Mass stipends for priests remains a fundamental aspect of our traditional aid efforts. We also extend assistance for crucial renovations to church buildings and provide vehicles for priests and religious sisters who are responsible for vast areas. Nevertheless the Church can also continue to count on our help in those countries of Northern Europe in which Catholics only number a small minority.