Father Larry Gosselin and the congregation at the Santa Barbara Mission joined Catholics around the world Friday in praying for Ukraine.
The priest spoke out against the Russian invasion and Russia’s possible use of nuclear weapons during a special Mass at the Santa Barbara Mission.
And in Rome, Pope Francis prayed for peace in Ukraine and invited bishops, priests and others to join him in a consecration prayer.
The prayer for peace came as President Joe Biden visited Poland, where he said the stakes go beyond Ukraine’s borders, referring to the question of whether democracy or autocracy would prevail.
President Biden called for the removal of Russia from the G20 and warned the U.S. would respond if Russia attacked Ukraine with chemical weapons.
Noting that Russia would pay a “severe price” if it used chemical weapons, National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan later clarified that the U.S. would never use chemical weapons “under any circumstances.”
As President Biden addressed U.S. service members from the 82nd Airborne Division, he stood 50 miles from Ukraine.
More than 2 million Ukrainian refugees have crossed the border into Poland. Many of them are traveling on to other countries.
President Biden announced this week that the U.S. would admit up to 100,000 people fleeing violence in Ukraine.
Meanwhile, Russia indicated it was scaling back its plans of conquest in Ukraine. The Russian Defense Ministry said Russia would focus on territory claimed by Russian-backed separatists in the East.
The announcement was made as Ukrainian forces succeeded in recapturing towns outside the capital of Kyiv.