While the young man's father officiated, his mother sang the song she used to sing when he was little.
It’s starting to show: people are weary of the war in Ukraine. They are tired of hearing about it in the media and in conversations among friends. Its consequences are tiring, and we’re even tired of its terrible human tragedies. As Pope Francis pointed out in his catechesis of Wednesday, May 25, we are a “society of weariness,” a satiated society, full of progress and well-being, but lacking the wisdom of life and therefore tired of everything.
Perhaps therein lies the explanation of why we can become tired of a situation that should rather provoke more indignation with each passing day.
Remember, there are many mothers who, on a daily basis, watch helplessly as the children they brought into the world and raised with so much love die. Even if they are adult enough to be on the battlefield, for the mothers who gave birth to them they will always be their little children, their helpless little ones facing a crazy world that has forced them to do what they did not want to.
Pope Francis, in a recent message addressed to the young people of Europe gathered at a meeting in Prague, could not have defined it better when he recalled that in wars, “as usual, a few powerful people decide and send thousands of young people to fight and die.”
A few weeks ago, a young Ukrainian met his death at the front, one more in the long list of lives—Russian lives as well—that are being destroyed by this absurd war. His name was Artem Dymyd. This young man had studied at the Ukrainian Catholic University in Lviv and was a member of Plast, the Ukrainian scout movement. He died in the Donetsk region. His funeral was held in late June.
While the young man’s father, a priest of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church, officiated at the ceremony, his mother took the microphone and gave a very special farewell to her son. She sang him the lullaby she used to sing when Artem was little.
When she finished singing, Ivanka added the following prayer: “Christ is risen from the dead.” The funeral attendees responded with one voice: “By His death, He has conquered death.”
The 27-year-old was living and studying in the United States when the invasion broke out. He decided to return to Ukraine to defend his country and his people from an “inhuman and sacrilegious aggression,” as defined by the pope.