Ministry Update for 6.17.22
Dear Friends and Partners,
Across much of the Donbass region south of our city, the intense fighting continues. Some of the military aid from the west is now in the Ukrainians hands, but the reports I hear is that the Ukrainian soldiers are very under resourced, compared to the Russian army. The Ukrainians are fighting valiantly and holding their ground as much as possible, but the Russian military has made advances, albeit slow advances. It is reported that Russian and Ukrainian military’ are losing between 100-200 men per day. It is currently a war of attrition.
Since my last mid-month update on May 25th, 25 civilians have been killed and an additional 78 people have been injured by Russian missiles and shelling in our region. The shelling and missiles are coming in with greater intensity than they were last month, but not as intensely as at the beginning of the war. Our partners are estimating that about 8 missiles per day are hitting Kharkiv.
The reason for this increased shelling is because the Russian’s have retaken large portions of land near Kharkiv. Despite the constant shelling and missiles, daily life has returned to Kharkiv and with a larger population, the city subway system recently reopened, so there can be movement across the city. People are trying to live with some sort of normalcy, but jobs are scarce. The city will never be what it once was with over 300,000+ homes uninhabitable. Amnesty International wrote on June 13th, “The use of missiles and widely banned cluster munitions by Russia in Kharkiv, [has] resulted in mass destruction and civilian death.”
Our six ministry partners within Kharkiv have returned to having regular church services. Many people from their churches are still living abroad, but church growth has increased due to many new people attending church, which is good news! People are open to the gospel more than they have in quite a while.
When our pastor’s are not ministering to those in their churches, they and are continuing to deliver food across our region – town by town and village by village. There have been multiple occasions where our ministry partners accidently met in the same village to deliver food, so these different churches are now coordinating together, so they don’t duplicate efforts. Relief agencies deliver food to Kharkiv and then our ministry partners distribute it to the outlining areas. One of our partners, with the help of several larger ministries, have distributed over 800 tons of food at last count. Another one of our partners feeds over 10,000 pepole per week – what an amazing accomplishment!
Here is our link if you would like to continue financially supporting our ministry efforts in and around Kharkiv, Kyiv, Ukraine orphans in Romania, and those Ukrainian refugees we are supporting in Poland, Germany, Spain, and Romania: slavicchristian.org/donate.
Our prayer request:
1) I have Covid – please pray that I get better soon; I am now on day 11;
2) Continue to pray for our ministry partner’s safety;
3) Please pray for our finances that are down 70% since the beginning of the war; and,
4) I have been told that pastor Sasha Salfyetnikov (who we have reported on last month), is now resting at home and is looking to relocate to another part of the country. That is about all I know right now, but he and his wife are alive, thank Goodness. Thank you for your prayers.
I have included a few ministry photos below. God bless you in every way; thank you again for your prayers and support!