It is encouraging and vital to share what God is doing in the lives of hurting Ukrainians as the war continues. In the midst of terrible destruction, He is still working to build His Kingdom . . . one family at a time. SGA-supported Pastor Olexander has shared with us the testimony of a family with four children who have received humanitarian aid and spiritual care from his congregation.
“God led us through such a difficult path there so that our family could meet such good believers who care about the homeless and the poor,” the family says. “We have lost everything for today, but we have gained more.” Read more from their story following Olexander’s ministry report below . . .
Our small Baptist church has 40 members. We’ve been actively involved in serving IDPs [internally displaced persons] since the first days of the war.
At first, we used church funds to buy food, and through the village authorities helped IDPs and the needy. Later, when we started to receive food through donations, we decided to organize evangelistic services with food distribution at the church. Now, thanks to this ministry, we are known in the village, and we work very closely with the village authorities. But the main thing is that people who were invited to the service heard about Christ. About eight people from the IDPs and the needy are already coming to church regularly and participating in the church service. We are also doing a children’s ministry, with about 20 children coming. We feed them, do activities with them, and teach them the Word of God. We also support several struggling families, have close relationships with them, and witness to them about Jesus. Our church is also involved in volunteer work.
We are grateful to SGA that at this time, we were able to serve the Lord and people by distributing food packages. There were 45 people who came and we served them with food. There was a little fruit—a few women came to the next church service and brought their children to the Sunday school. We had a nice conversation with them. We are very grateful to the mission, to each brother and sister who make their efforts so that we could bring the Gospel through “unrighteous riches”! May the Lord bless you abundantly!
For His glory,
Our family includes six people. Four children, father and mother. We lived on the left bank of the occupied Kherson region (the village of Hornostaivka). We had a small business there (we were farmers). My husband and I worked for ourselves.
When the war started, like most people in our village, we thought that everything would be over and that it would not last long. But the day came when the occupiers came to our village. Life became more and more frightening and more difficult. There were constant threats from the occupiers to kill us, along with arrogance and threats to take our children from us. It was very scary. We really did not know what to expect from them.
We decided to flee to the free part of Ukraine. We made several attempts, all of them were in vain. We were constantly turned back at the first checkpoint, although they said we could leave, and that the green corridor for refugees was open. We had already lost all hope of leaving. Then they told us again that the Ukrainian authorities had reached an agreement and we could leave, and we started to cross again.
It took us 11 days to get out of there. We passed through five checkpoints put up by the occupiers. At each checkpoint, there were difficulties—they checked our documents, refused to let us go, scared us that if they let us go at this checkpoint, they might not let us go at the next one, that we would not leave anyway. We stood at the last checkpoint for about nine days, thinking we would never get out and would have to return again. A woman who was a complete stranger to us took us in and let us live with her. Every day we returned to this last checkpoint and were turned back, coming up with different reasons why we could not be allowed to enter the free part of Ukraine. There were endless lines of people on cars, mopeds, motorcycles, and even bicycles.
On the tenth day, after long negotiations and threats on their part not to let us out, we were finally allowed to pass. When we crossed the already free part of Ukraine, it was an overwhelming feeling of joy and a sense that all the terrible things were behind us.
We stopped in [this village]. A family took us in and we stayed with them for three months. Then an old woman from this village was taken in by her children to Rivne, and she allowed us to live in her small house.
It was very difficult to find work for a long time. Then my husband was hired as a plumber, the salary was minimal, and it was difficult to survive.
Today, the Baptist church helped us with the food package. This help is very timely for us, and if I may say so, it is life-giving. God led us through such a difficult path there so that our family could meet such good believers who care about the homeless and the poor. We have lost everything for today, but we have gained more. We have fellowship with people who sincerely love God and teach us to believe and pray to Him.
We are also grateful to those people who took part in bringing these products to us. May the Lord, in His mercy, repay them a hundredfold. We thank them for their caring and big hearts. Obviously, our grief has become their grief. It’s good that there are such people with big and kind hearts in the world!
In a time of great uncertainty, God is bringing help, healing, and hope to the people of Ukraine through SGA-supported pastors, churches, a seminary, and SGA-supported Compassion Ministry. Be a part of God’s incredible work with your generosity and prayer support.
Your gift of compassion helps struggling people with emergency aid that generally includes Scripture materials, food, medicine, warm clothing, and shoes.