Home Found: A Prayer for the African Students Stuck in Ukraine

Disclaimer: The following piece contains trigger warnings for racism, the Russian Ukraine invasion, and the hostage situation I discuss more about below. Please read at a healthy pace, and take breaks between reading if you need to. Thank you in advance.

Lord, you created all of us in your image and likeness, so we could use our God given purpose to help the younger generation use their gifts to change the world. These aspiring doctors and nurses are no different, especially during the pandemic where healthcare workers are putting their lives at risk everyday.

Deliver them out of Ukraine, so they aren’t caught in the middle of Russia’s invasion of the country. Reunite them with their mothers, fathers, siblings, friends in the places they call home. And likewise, give them peace of mind so they can feel your everlasting presence, which will transcend any fear and anxiety they have right now. For fear is the absence of you.

Lastly, God, this unprecedented departure may have these scholars wondering what their next steps will be now that they’re struggling to leave Ukraine. We ask that you continue instilling the intrinsic motivation in them to excel in their studies, and to gain the tangible experience needed to grow as future doctors and nurses of the world.

Lord, we trust in you. We will wish them well, and you will bring them home.

Amen.

A Few Words from Avery Danae

I am using this platform right now to ask you to keep the African students stuck in Ukraine right now in prayer.

These individuals are studying to become doctors and nurses, and they are trying to make it back home to countries like Nigeria to escape Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. However, many of them are being blocked from leaving the country, seeking refuge elsewhere, or forging alternative escape routes after they were essentially told, “You’re on your own.”

As Founder and President of the African American Appreciation Club at my school, I felt called to write and share it with you all because if we don’t write and speak this unfortunate problem into existence, it will go unsolved along with many other untold stories of African/African Americans facing similar hardships. Long story short, the mishandling of the situation, on the government side, is unacceptable. It has no right to block these scholars out of the country.

As you read my prayer, I hope you listened to “The Lost Children” by Michael Jackson concurrently. The King of Pop sang it on his Invisible album to acknowledge the children taken away from their families, never to be seen again. We often take family for granted thinking that they can be annoying at times, but the reality is that without our parents there would be no us. Meanwhile, there are young children who are fatherless, motherless, or both who want nothing more than to have that unconditionally loving, supportive parent figure(s) in their life. We can’t even begin to imagine how the children in Ukraine feel right now, losing their innocence to their home turned war zone country, being stripped of everything they own, going through one day after the next wondering if their families might be killed during the invasion.

Conclusion

Let’s lift the scholars stuck in Ukraine up in prayer. We must “wish them well and wish them home” (to quote Michael Jackson), so they are no longer caught in the Russia-Ukraine conflict.

Thank you for your time,

Avery Danae

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Contributor for The Power of Poetry, Catholicism for the Modern World, and An Injustice. Writer of YA poems & essays: https://beacons.ai/averydanaewrites

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Avery Danae (she/her/they/them)

Avery Danae (she/her/they/them)

Contributor for The Power of Poetry, Catholicism for the Modern World, and An Injustice. Writer of YA poems & essays: https://beacons.ai/averydanaewrites

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