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First they got married, then they went to war: The moving decision of a couple from Ukraine

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A Ukrainian couple on their wedding day.

Volodymyr Ariev | Facebook

Aleteia - published on 02/28/22

"My daughter, I knew that you would grow up to be a patriot and a fighter, and that you would choose a husband who was the same."

Their wedding was supposed to be completely different. Like any couple planning their big day, they wanted to say “yes” in a beautiful setting, surrounded by family and friends. But this couple from Ukraine was faced with the choice to get married, or go to war.

Jarina and Sviatoslav

The ceremony was to take place in a few months. However, in the face of the dramatic events unfolding in Ukraine, Jarina Ariev and Sviatoslav Gursin, a young couple from Kyiv, decided to get married immediately. And instead of on a honeymoon, they picked up weapons and went to war. As the bride said, if they must face death, they want to be together.

Jarina probably learned to love her homeland from her family: Her father, Volodymyr Ariev, is a member of the Verkhovna Rada (the unicameral parliament of Ukraine) and with the young couple has also joined the cause for the defense of his country.

“I knew you would grow up to be a patriot”

“May God protect you, children! My daughter, I knew that you would grow up to be a patriot and a fighter and that you would choose a husband who was the same. With people like you, Ukraine will defeat the horde,” wrote Volodymyr Ariev, Jarina’s mother, on social media, the day after her daughter’s wedding.

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