Winter in Kyiv, Ukraine (2018) / Viktor Bystrov / Unsplah (CC0)
Rome Newsroom, Dec 6, 2022 / 03:24 am (CNA).
The Vatican’s charity office is holding a drive to collect thermal shirts for people in Ukraine as they face an energy emergency amid the war.
Cardinal Konrad Krajewski, the pope’s almoner, said Dec. 5 that the charity office of the Vatican is “already stocking up” on thermal shirts for men, women, and children.
Others are encouraged to join the initiative by bringing or shipping shirts to the Dicastery for the Service of Charity by the beginning of January, when the shipment of shirts will be brought to Kyiv, Ukraine’s capital city, by truck.
“The Ukrainian people are experiencing an emergency related not only to the war but also to the lack of electricity, gas, and the very cold winter weather,” Krajewski said.
“We can help them this Christmas,” he added, “with the gift of thermal shirts, suitable for maintaining body temperature, for men, women or children.”
Systematic bombing by Russia has damaged Ukraine’s energy infrastructure, and the country’s government has warned that the networks will not withstand winter’s increased demands.
Papal envoy Cardinal Konrad Krajewski prays at a mass grave in Ukraine on Good Friday, April 15, 2022. Vatican Media.
People in Ukraine are facing freezing weather without electricity, heat, or water, as January, the country’s coldest month of the year, approaches.
Temperatures in Kyiv are already below freezing, with a mixture of rain and snow in the near forecast.
Thermal shirts help retain heat and maintain body temperature in cold weather and are usually worn as a base layer under other clothing.
Cardinal Krajewski has traveled to Ukraine by truck several times since Russia’s invasion in February, bringing food and supplies to be distributed to those in need.