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The Diary of Anya Verkhovskaya: Going to war in Ukraine without ever leaving her office in Milwaukee

Today I went to war without ever leaving my office in Milwaukee. Every morning at 3:00 a.m., which is 11:00 a.m. in Ukraine, I leave my warm, comfortable bed, drink my coffee, and then I stand up tall and strong to the bully. I stand up to Putin. I am a proud U.S. citizen, saving the lives of strangers halfway across the world. I work with citizens of many other countries, providing children, the elderly, and the infirm with supplies that make a difference on a small and large scale, and so can you. I am a political refugee,...

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Fighting War Fatigue: Volunteer network continues saving lives in Ukraine as public donations dry up

As the Russian invasion of Ukraine shocked the world over ten months ago, Anya Verkhovskaya’s phone began to fill with messages from friends and former colleagues in Ukraine asking for help. In the space of just a few months, the informal network transformed into an organized, large-scale humanitarian aid infrastructure. “I remember the morning of February 24th,” said Verkhovskaya, a Russian-born Jew who emigrated to the United States as a political refugee in 1989. “I had no experience in rescue and air evacuations or providing humanitarian aid, but I understood that I had to do something to help,” she...

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Volodymyr Karplyuk: Irpin needs to be heard as the city faces both problems and progress with recovery

Emmanuel Macron, Justin Trudeau, Anthony Blinken, Olaf Scholz, Bono from U2, Mario Draghi. About 100 world-famous people have visited Irpin over the past 9 months. Destroyed, but unconquered Irpin has become an attractive photo zone for foreign guests and a symbol of invincibility at the cost of destruction. But with the passage of time, foreign delegations also became a bright symbol – a symbol of sighing about the fate of the hero-city without further quick, direct and effective help. Therefore, just like in February, the management team of the city decided to save and further develop Irpin independently. Back...

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Make-A-Wish Wisconsin teams up with 128th Air Refueling Wing to fulfill a special aviation dream

The 128th Air Refueling Wing held its first joint pilot-for-a-day and honorary commander ceremony in early August at General Mitchell Field in Milwaukee. Caleb Zimmet’s wish was to be a pilot. Unfortunately, Department of Defense regulations do not allow anyone under the age of 17 on an orientation flight. That meant flying on a KC-135 was out of the question. Members of the 128th Air Refueling Wing decided to make Caleb’s visit a joint venture. The 128 Air Refueling Wing’s first Make-A-Wish event entailed a full day of ceremony, training, tours, with Caleb’s favorite foods – pizza and ice...

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Prayers amid trauma: Survivors respond to funeral as Archdiocese of Milwaukee honors Rembert Weakland

The Archdiocese of Milwaukee held a funeral Mass on August 30 for former archbishop of Milwaukee Rembert Weakland, who died on August 22 at age 95. The service stands as a difficult day for many sexual abuse survivors and their loved ones, and the celebration of Weakland’s life may bring up strong, painful feelings. “Sexual abuse, especially abuse by a religious leader, is a deep and long-lasting trauma, and we urge all people to be mindful of this reality when they speak about Weakland’s legacy … As Catholics, we believe in praying for all who have died. While this...

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Mike Larson: Personal reflections on remaining Catholic in spite of the ongoing sex abuse crisis

When the news of the McCarrick scandal hit the headlines in November 2020, the blow to my family and our faith was devastating. Normally, I am an unabashed enthusiast full of love for the Catholic Church, sharing my faith even with secular friends, but these revelations reduced me to silence. I found myself wrestling with unavoidable questions: Why am I still doing this? How can I stay in a Church associated with so much corruption and evil? As a kid growing up in a family of former Catholics, I could give you hundreds of reasons to not be Catholic....

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