I know folks all around the world are praying for Ukraine, especially those that are followers of Christ as they encourage others around them.
My Dad came out of Russia (now Ukraine) in 1928 at the age of 20 along with his mother and father and one other brother. Left behind were other brothers, sisters, aunts, uncles’ friends, etc. His village, Buzovystsya is about 12 miles from the northern part of Moldova. Population I would guess would be less than 5,000.
I still remember when he made a visit to his village in 1961 (cold war era), the authorities made him travel at night so he could not see how bad it was in that region of the county, i.e., lack of everything that we take for granted here in the US. He had a camera, but somewhere along the trip, someone exposed all the rolls of film. The only picture he returned with was the one with his extended family taken at a studio.
Bibles were a big “no-no” but he felt he had to risk it and took some with him. God shielded the guard’s eye from seeing them in his searched luggage. Certainly a God thing!
My Dad always felt his village should have a gospel-preaching church. Over the years a preacher was found and willing to start a church in the 1990s right after the recognition of Ukraine. When my Dad was in his 80s, he made several trips to oversee and help the best he could with the funding of a church building. He, along with my eldest brother, made the dedication of the church when he was 90 years of age.
We would call his village poor. Many still did not have running water in their home. The members prepared food for about 80 people for that special day. Turns out, several 100 folks attended, including the mayor and other dignitaries from the surrounding area. Having a church in the village was something special. The folks just prayed about what to do because they knew they did not have enough food. Maybe the feeding of the 5,000 came to mind.
Just as the long dedication service was letting out, a thunderstorm with a heavy downpour came up. Folks scattered to get out of the rain. When the storm let up, the number of folks remaining was around 80. Another God thing! We have lost contact with his family after my Dad’s passing at age 93 in 2002 but had received reports that the church was going strong.
There are many small villages like my Dad’s all throughout Ukraine and I pray they will not feel the brunt of bombings or missile attacks. I have many stories from my Dad’s visits that demonstrate these are loving and caring people.