Our Ukrainian brothers and sisters are in continued need of our support! They are very grateful for all the help they have received so far: the financial support as well as the prayers and love. As of this writing, the war is in its eleventh day, and there is no immediate end in sight. The majority of blessed families living in Kyiv and other cities have left to find refuge in safer locations. Some are in Poland; some are close to the Polish border, as in a village near Lviv. A few brothers and sisters have decided to stay behind to protect the church properties in Kyiv and to resist. Two families are trapped in a town near Kyiv in the middle of the war zone.
As a former missionary to Ukraine (1991–1993), I know many of the Ukrainian brothers and sisters and am in contact with them. At the beginning of the invasion I received a request for financial help from one of the church leaders whom I know well from my missionary time and trust completely. She is a wonderful Russian sister, her husband is Ukrainian, and together they have three children. Her fervent desire is to take care of all Ukrainian brothers and sisters. The financial help will go to address immediate needs, and once this war is over, also toward reconstruction.
Please consider making a donation.
Thank you for your generosity!
Brief report from Ukraine, May 18, 2022 May 18, 2022
On May 14th Ukraine won Eurovision 2022. And the day after, on Sunday morning at 4.30 am our community staying in the Western part of Ukraine woke up because our house was shaking.We ran to our bomb shelter. And we saw a missile in the sky and heard the bombing sounds.On May 17th night we were running to the bomb shelter twice: the first time to the sounds of explosions at 1 am, the second time - at 4 am under the air raid sirens. A railway was bombed near us.
May 16th one of our families who evacuated to Lviv had a son - the third child in their family. We prayed that there would be no air raid during the caesarean. This is the first child of the second generation born during the war. One baby was born a couple days before the war.
We deeply feel the prayer supports of our dear brothers and sisters in Europe and America. And your financial support makes our live as refugees and internally displaced much smoother. Thank you and much love from Ukraine!
Easter Report April 27, 2022
Last week was the Holy week in Ukraine, which is the week before Easter, starting with Willow Sunday, and finishing with Easter Sunday on April 24th. Unfortunately, Russia's government has rejected an Easter ceasefire, despite the calls of the United Nations chief. And Holy week started for us with four missiles launched on our town on April 16th and with four missiles launched on Lviv City two days later.
Ukraine's military has warned residents not to gather for Orthodox Easter in the churches. So, we tried to be very careful and went to the church just briefly to sanctify the baskets with food, which is the ancient Ukrainian Easter tradition. We were hospitably and warmly congratulated by the local community in the village where our families settled in Western Ukraine.
On Easter eve, our host brought us twelve Easter pies and various other treats. Thanks to some donations we got, we could buy a lot of food for our community on Easter eve, as well as we bought vegetables and fruits for the local Center for the internally displaced persons, which serves more than three thousand IDPs from different parts of Ukraine.
Report with images: https://www.dropbox.com/s/qd7ensjl3doyg7v/Brief%20Easter%20report%20from%20Ukraine_26.04.2022.pdf?dl=0
Report from Ukraine March 26, 2022
Thank you for your continued support. We received a long report from Anya about the situation of the Unification families in Ukraine, together with many images. The report is too long to post as an update here, but you can find it in a Dropbox folder here:
Thank you for your concern, prayers and efforts. Under these horrible circumstances, facing unfathomable ruthlessness and cruelty of those trying to kill us, we at the same time are moved to tears by the kindness and generosity of those who support and care for us all around the world.
There is no safe place in Ukraine these days. The Russians use missiles and artillery randomly to terrorize peaceful cities, towns and villages. Just yesterday one of the biggest shopping malls in Kyiv was hit and caught fire. Some of our members live just across the street, their apartment suffered due to the explosion, at least two windows destroyed. Luckily they evacuated earlier.
Still some 10+ members are staying in Kyiv, me and my wife included.
Many of the families who moved to the west of Ukraine felt compelled to travel further to Poland, Germany, Hungary, Romania after the missile attack on the training center just 20 km from the Polish border.
You can imagine how exhausting it is. Some parents shared that the children are very much affected psychologically. For adults it is also a huge stress - settling down in a foreign country, getting used to a different culture, feeling themselves as temporary residents yet not knowing when all of this will end... They also face financial pressure as the cost of living there is higher than in Ukraine, even though governments provide many benefits for refugees.
Despite all of this, the spirit is high. We feel Ukraine is really protecting not only Europe but the entire world from Putin. Although Ukraine is paying a huge price now, we hope this will help everyone awaken and not take peace, freedom and the fundamental human rights for granted any more. The sooner the world will realize this, the faster we all will welcome victory.
Some good news! March 10, 2022
We are happy to report that the two families that were trapped in the basement of a house in Bucha in the middle of warzone for the last two weeks, without electricity or running water, were able to get out from there. This is from Anya:
\"Our two Bucha families could get out, they were brought by the evacuation bus to the train station in Kyiv.
There was only one bus that Russian troops let out, all others were blocked for now. And our families managed to get on that bus!
We are sure, this is thanks to all your prayers! Thank you so much for your support! They will still need to go to the west from Kyiv. But at least they could get out of the occupied Bucha, and now they are more or less safe!\"
Message from Anya March 9, 2022
The following was posted by our sister Anya who lived in Kyiv before she and her family had to evacuate:
“I love the holiday of March 8th [International Women’s Day]. But today, probably for the first time on that day, I am not in a festive mood at all. The same as everyone around me. Because there is a war going on in our land, and the war has no days off and holidays. During these 13 days of the war, I re-evaluated many things. As a woman, I love beautiful things and especially jewelry. Last year, on March 8th, my husband gave me a beautiful set of necklaces and earrings, as well as a huge bouquet of flowers.
But when we urgently evacuated with the children on the 7th day of the war, I was allowed to take only a small bag with me (it\'s in the photo): so that it would be convenient to run, in case, holding my youngest daughter in my other hand ... Therefore, I did not take any clothes, jewelry, or shoes with me in heels, not even shampoo ... And then I realized that all I need is not so much. After all, the main thing is that I had children with me.
And everything else - as they say, \"acquisitive\". Happy March 8th to all of us, and, most importantly, victory!”
Another stirring video March 4, 2022
Here is another stirring video, from Tetyana Kotseba, president of WFWP in Ukraine.
Today’s update consists of a video from Kyiv created by Ihor Korsun. He talks about his experience of living in a war zone, about the situation of some of our church families, and about the spirit of the Ukrainian people.
The situation of our members in Ukraine is worsening. We received the following report from one of the leaders in Kyiv:
Yesterday we organized the evacuation of 40 of our members (mostly wives and children) to Western Ukraine, away from Kyiv. Some are on buses and others on trains. 5 hours after our families (including my wife and children) left the central railway station, it was hit by a Russian rocket.
Today one of our brothers is going to pick up one wife who is staying alone with her little daughter, to take her to our church center. Two families with young children are in a house in a war zone, on the front line, witnessing ongoing attacks by Russian troops. We tried to evacuate them twice, but were unable to, because we got under shelling and our way was blocked.
After sending off the women and children, five brothers remain at the church center to guard it and take care of those members of our extended family who remained in the Kyiv region and could not travel to Western Ukraine for various reasons. I am on duty as a doctor in the local territorial defense, my shift lasts 12 hours and I take care of people\'s health.
People, children, and women are dying here. The university building in Kharkiv was destroyed, as were houses, schools, hospitals, infrastructure in many places.
February 28 Update March 1, 2022
On behalf of all members in Ukraine I would like to thank everyone for their generous donations. Today we have reached our original goal of $20,000. I tried to adjust the goal of this campaign from $20,000 to $30,000, but the website won’t let me do it (and their customer service has not answered my inquiry yet). But we will continue to raise funds, as they are still needed.
Communication with our members in Ukraine is difficult as they can’t always respond, but I was able to hear from one brother who told us that two blessed families whom he used to live with are stuck in a town that is the epicenter of the fight between the Russian invaders and the Ukrainian army, and there is no water, no electricity and no Internet connections. Other members were trying to get them out of that city but because all the bridges and roads have been blown up, there is no way to get to them at this point.
In fact, this brother and his wife were almost killed when they found themselves unexpectedly at the front line. They had driven their car near a bridge that came under enemy fire. They were only about 100 meters from the bridge when one part of it exploded. A rocket passed by just a few meters from their car. They felt that it was only because of God’s protection that they were still alive. Had they arrived at that bridge just a few moments earlier, their car would have been destroyed by the explosion on the bridge.
As far as I know, all the brothers and sisters are unharmed. I pray that it will stay this way, and that this war will come to an end soon.
Message received from Ukraine, Friday 25, around noon (EST) February 25, 2022
Dear brothers and sisters,
On behalf of Ukrainian Movement, I want to thank you for your constant support and concern.
Your non-stopping prayers are needed now, as never: there is a fight now for our capital Kyiv, and today and tomorrow are crucial for us. We, those who stay in Kyiv, can hear explosions and shooting since early morning. Time to time we hear sirens and go down to the shelter. One of our brothers witnessed the explosion of the bridge, right after he crossed it.
Our lives are in danger, but even more than that we are deeply concerned about our country destiny, our dearest Ukraine. TF was teaching us that we can’t find personal happiness without our nations’ happiness. This is what each of Ukrainian members deeply feels now.
So, please pray not only for our lives, but for Ukraine to be able to stand in this situation and to stay free and peaceful nation!
With love, NL of Ukraine.
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