March 7, 2022
Dear Brothers and Sisters,
The current conflict in Ukraine has created many grievous and painful situations, too numerous to relate. The Ukrainian saints are suffering, many traumatized by the great danger resulting from war. We provide the update below in order that we could all pray and stand together with these members of Christ’s Body who are standing for His kingdom on earth.
There are still ten saints remaining in the city of Mariupol, with whom we have lost contact for the last three days. There is no water, no electricity, and no medicine in this city. The apartment buildings where the saints live are being utterly destroyed.
Tonight as the city of Mykolaiv fell under the rain of rockets, we wept together with the saints on the phone.
Some of our brothers on the front line are able to rest only by laying under the sky on the open ground, since living under any kind of covering invites an attack. The brothers are cold, and their bodies are failing. Our brother Oleg’s kidneys are starting to give him trouble. There are no medicines.
The city of Chernigov, where we have a meeting hall which also serves as a Rhema warehouse for Russian Recovery Versions, is surrounded by opposing forces. Years of ministry translation work into the Ukrainian language is also stored there on computer hard drives.
The capital, Kyiv, is being rocked by huge explosions. There are still about 20 praying saints in the meeting hall. Many of the other Kyiv saints remain in their apartments in various districts of the city. One family and several saints are in Bucha, a suburb of Kyiv, which has seen intense fighting. They have been living in the basement of a central apartment building with 60 other people, mainly women and children. One couple, Sasha and Anya, both FTTM (Full Time Training in Moscow) graduates, preached the gospel to everyone who is with them in the basement, and everyone called upon the name of the Lord! Anya has her guitar and has been singing with the children.
This past Lord’s Day, March 6, the saints in Ukraine had a corporate Lord’s table meeting by Zoom. It was attended by over 400 saints throughout the country. As we were singing and praising, we could still hear the sound of explosions through the microphones of some of the saints in battle-torn areas. During the sharing time, a number of brothers testified about our oneness and our victory in the Lord. Although some saints are finding it difficult not to direct their blame on persons, the atmosphere was changed when one simple brother, entering into God’s view, expressed a heart to bring the gospel to young soldiers on the street, regardless of which side of the conflict they found themselves on.
May the Lord help and train us all to ascend with Him, to pray from the position of His ascension, having His view and thought related to the current situation (see Lessons on Prayer, p. 197). May the Lord be merciful to us all.
The serving ones in Ukraine