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Apr 16, 2024
Insight From Michael

The pressure is increasing on pastors. Please pray!

As is the case with the November/December issue of the Good News Report, the May/June issue covers two months and is focused on how your faithful support helps equip faithful missionary pastors and their families for fruitful ministry. 

Along with others on the SGA team, I have had numerous opportunities to travel to Russia, Belarus, Ukraine, Kazakhstan, and the other former Soviet countries to see the pastors and their churches in action. Every time, I come back home blessed and encouraged having seen the wonderful fruit of their service to Christ. 

These faithful pastors lead such an intense ministry schedule. Many are planting more than one church at a time, and carrying out visitation, one-on-one evangelism, children’s ministries, camp outreaches, prison ministry, and even church-based drug rehabilitation. They are living examples of . . . whatever your hand finds to do, do it with all your might (Ecclesiastes 9:10). 

Many of these pastors work full time jobs in addition to their full time church ministry. They joyfully make great sacrifices for the opportunity to share the life-changing Gospel with one more person—man, woman, teenage youth, or child. I can’t help but also consider the great pressures many of them face in regions where opposition to the Gospel is strong, such as in the Muslim-dominated lands of Central Asia. Churches in the European, non-Islamic parts of the former Soviet Union are not immune. 

Pressure from governing authorities is increasing by the day. In Belarus, churches are being forced to re-register with the potential of not having their registration accepted. Russian evangelical churches face great pressure to back the war in Ukraine, although they have taken a pacifist position on war for years. But they go on lovingly and boldly proclaiming the love of Christ and the hope of the Gospel. They are an inspiration and example for us all. 

Please join me in offering up regular intercessory prayer for our brothers and sisters across the former Soviet Union. Ask the Lord to bless them, encourage their hearts, and provide for their needs. Pray also for SGA as we continue to help them in any way that God opens to us. We couldn’t do it without you!

For our Savior,

Michael Johnson

Michael Johnson

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