St Josephat's Monastery Hosts Fundraiser for Ukraine


By Chris O’Neill

St. Josephat’s Monastery, in Glen Cove, hosted another fundraiser on June 19th to collect funds to support the people of Ukraine in their heroic struggle against Russian President Vladimir Putin's scorched-earth invasion of the smaller, neighboring country.

Putin brutally invaded the Ukraine to try to annex its territory, on February 24th of this year. Putin's initial invasion from the north was a failure, as Ukrainian defenders stopped the invading Russian armies. But Putin is now re-directing his attacks from the south and east, and is deliberately bombing civilians to spread terror ahead of his armies.

This was not the first Ukrainian fundraiser held at St. Josephat’s Monastery, which has been a strong supporter of the people of Ukraine in this most horrible and trying time.

Money was raised from the sale of homemade Ukrainian foods - including 80 dozen perogies and 500 stuffed cabbages - and from the sale of donated items in a raffle. All told, after expenses, the fundraiser raised over $12,000, which includes $3,400 from the raffle items.

According to Halyna Fenchenko, who actively participated in organizing the event, the money will go wherever it is most needed. Money raised at similar events in the past was used to buy military boots, uniforms and binoculars for Ukrainian soldiers, as well as two portable vacuum-assisted wound care units for a hospital in the city of Poltava. Ukrainian hospitals were not prepared for the sudden influx in war-related wounds.

The war is very personal for Halyna. She came to the United States from Ukraine, 21 years ago, in 2001.

This year, her cousin volunteered to defend Ukraine after the Russian invasion, by joining the Ukraine Army. Tragically, he was wounded in a Russian attack, and has lost movement in his arm.

In the war - during which drones are playing an increasing role - her cousin fled with his colleagues from a Russian "killer drone" that was identifying their position. They managed to scramble to a earthen root cellar and close the door just as an artillery shell, directed by the drone, landed. The drone's bomb blast shattered his arm, but he survived – as did all his fellow soldiers.

If you would like to help, or to make a donation, please call: 631-813-5292.