“Jesus says there’s no greater love than giving one’s life…”

Archibishop  Borys Gudziak’s Sermon at the White House prayer vigil for fallen Ukrainian heroes on March 13, 2022

John Liccione

Russi Leaks 

During a moving prayer vigil at the White House commemorating fallen Ukrainian heroes this Sunday, the haunting Ukrainian lament Plyve Kacha Po Tysyni (The Duckling Swims) played mournfully as the crowd knelt and bowed their heads as Putin’s bombs and missiles continue to fall on the Ukrainian people.

Replete with emotional pleas from several speakers to President Biden to provide the Ukrainian people and forces air cover over Ukraine, it was a solemn and moving vigil for Ukraine’s fallen heroes, many of them children. Ukrainian and American flags billowed beautifully in a strong wind as the sun shone brightly down on this beautiful crowd which ranged from the very young up to the elderly. The most moving part occurred when the crowd knelt and a Plyve Kacha Po Tysyni washed over the crowd from the loudspeakers.

The song is a lament about a young soldier leaving home to fight in a foreign land. The full lyrics are provided below.  For generations, it has been a Ukrainian song that warns of war’s risks. The music, the voices, the faces, the billowing flags: It was overwhelming. Russi Leaks captured the beautiful faces, the flags, the music, and the final moment which, totally un-staged, our camera caught a perfect blending of the Ukrainian and American flags wrapped tightly as if one. You just can’t make that stuff up.

After the prayer, Archbishop Borys Gudziakis gave a moving sermon and and song commemorating those fallen so far in defense of the innocent and the lives of the innocents lost. The full 10 and a half minute video of Archbishop Gudziakis’ sermon and prayers is here in which he declared Ukraine has already won the moral war, and that Ukraine will win the war in all respects. He quoted Jesus from the Bible from John 15:13, saying : “There is no greater love than giving one’s life for one’s friends.” More images from the prayer vigil are below.

слава україні (Glory to Ukraine), героям слава (Glory to Heroes) and God bless America!

The Duckling Swims (on the Tysyn)


Hey, swims the duckling, on the Tysyn,

Swims, the duckling, on the Tysyn. 

Oh, dear mother, don’t scold me so, 

Oh dear mother, don’t scold me so, 

Hey, you scandal us, in this, evil hour,

Scandal you us, in this, evil hour,

Myself, I do not know, where I will die,

Myself I do not know, where I will die,  

Hey, I will perish, in a land foreign,

Perish will I, in a foreign land.

Who, among us, will, take a pit?

Who among us, will take a pit? 

Hey, Strangers for us, will now choose,

For us will strangers, now choose.

For you, will this not be, sorrow, dear mother?

For you will this not be sorrow, dear mother? 

Hey, how can this not be, my son sorrow for me?

For me, how can this not be, sorrow my son?

For you, had lain, on my dear heart,

For you had lain on, my dear heart. 

Hey, swims the duckling, on the Tysyn,

Swims the duckling on, the Tysyn.  (Source: https://lyricstranslate.com)