240104 Sga Ukraine War Stories 12 7 Social Post 1 Wordpress Preview 460x460 V1
Editor’s Note: The images below were provided by an SGA-supported church in Ukraine.

“Providing essential products or school bags doesn’t feel like it’s sufficient. However, sharing the Gospel is never a small gesture.”  These are the words of Oleksandra, an SGA Storyteller from Ukraine.  Her SGA-supported church has been developing a ministry to the many widows who have lost husbands and fathers since the war began almost two years ago. The smiles seen in the photos attached, show that although it may seem like “small things” to host art workshops or supply children with necessary items for school, it is much greater for the women and children on the other end. These women and children have been stripped of so much, and the path for the future must seem most difficult. But knowing that they don’t have to do it alone brings great comfort…  “even a little bit of attention can bring a lot of comfort and support.” 

Please continue to pray for this ministry and that it will always be a place of restoration and peace.  A place that one can come and not only hear of the Gospel of Christ, but to see Christ through the people.  

Oleksandra writes:

I can’t recall the exact date when we first began the meeting for the wives of fallen heroes, but our new widows ministry (even though those ladies prefer not to be called widows) has become a meaningful part of our church. Thanks to the support from SGA, we were able to do more than just sending them to a retreat camp in July. We also managed to supply them with necessary items, set up an art workshop, and make sure their kids had all the school supplies they needed for the new school year in September.

Sometimes, it may seem like we’re doing small things, but for those who have faced loss, even a little bit of attention can bring a lot of comfort and support. As one woman named Maryna said, “The thought that we are not indifferent to someone warms my heart.” And here’s the story she shared with me.

“In November 2022, I experienced an unimaginable loss when my husband, the father of our sons, aged 8 and 18, passed away in the war. We had shared 20 years together, and his absence left an indescribable pain—a void that feels like a piece of my heart has been torn away. Adjusting to the reality that our dearest, most beloved husband and dad is no longer with us has been a heartbreaking journey over many months. Facing an unfair situation, the state has not provided any financial assistance, and we solely rely on a pension for our younger son. This amount barely covers the expenses for his extracurricular activities. Despite our active efforts, we receive no benefits for his school’s extended day group and meals, leaving me, a single and vulnerable woman, striving for nearly a year to meet all the needs of my children.

The war not only took away a loved one but also stripped us of our support system, shattering the dreams we had of a happy life as a complete family. Our challenges are both emotional and financial, making it an incredibly difficult journey for us. Currently, I find myself compelled to work two jobs to manage utility bills and provide some support to my children, a situation that takes a toll on me physically. In the midst of these struggles, any assistance is immensely appreciated. The warmth that comes from knowing that we are not facing these hardships alone truly warms my heart.”

Before I met Maryna and heard her story, I got to know her younger son. He was that enthusiastic boy who eagerly attended my Bible lessons in the camp this past summer, listening more attentively than others. I’ll always remember the day he said, “I had never been afraid of death before the war. I never thought it would come to our family. Now it’s my biggest fear.” On that day, we talked about Jesus, who conquered death, offering hope and eternal life to those who believe in Him. Hearing stories of women left alone, struggling to raise their children, makes me feel powerless. Providing essential products or school bags doesn’t feel like it’s sufficient. However, sharing the Gospel is never a small gesture. Jesus is always enough, and that conviction motivates me to continue sharing this truth with non-believers, especially in the midst of war.

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-sponsored 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, and hygiene supplies.

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