Dear Friends and Partners,
It has now been 5.5 months since the beginning of the war in Ukraine and there are still millions upon millions of refugees and displaced people all over Ukraine and other European countries. We continue to help refugee families across these areas, but most of our work is in Kharkiv and Romania. Until this month, we were helping individuals and ministries in and around Kyiv too. With your help, we have helped thousands upon thousands of people. Because donations have tapered off significantly, we are now focusing on our primary calling, which is Kharkiv and Romania. You can read more about this below.
This month, I want to share with you about Svetlana, her sister, Katya, and her brother-in-law Zhenya, who is now in the military.
Something explodes, someone dies, or something is destroyed
“Hello, my name is Svetlana Agarkov. Since the beginning of this war, words cannot express to you what we have gone through emotionally. It is very painful to watch what is happening to my country – I have no more strength to hear about the death and destruction. I have been horrified with the imagery of Kyiv and all across Ukraine. It seems like a dream and this war is so surreal.
Everyone lives in basements or bomb shelters, and many people are lacking food and water, and they don’t always have the ability to communicate with family in other locations of the country. There is always the fear of death or women being raped – it is horrible. Sometimes, I don’t even have the strength to write, because I am in some sort of paralysis of fear.
Every day, the sirens go off, something explodes, someone dies, or something is destroyed. We see airplanes and rockets destroyed mid-air. Our son-in-law, Zhenya, is in the army (Zhenya and Katya were married a few short months before the war). We fearfully wait to hear news from him daily, just to see if he is safe and alive. Apparently, he is in a dangerous location and phosphorous bombs exploded near where he is stationed. To say the least, the situation is very tense.
We spend an enormous amount of time looking for supplies for ourselves, Zhenya and our ministry. We regularly travel to several towns before finding the one item we need. Thankfully, we were able to send Zhenya a bullet proof vest from the little money we have now that the war began. Thank you Slavic Christian Ministries for helping out so much; you are a blessing! We send care packages to Zhenya and he shares them with his friends on the battlefield. I was surprised to discover that these little offerings of love literally give these soldiers the will to survive. Can you imagine how just a few things from home brings joy to those feeling hopeless on the front lines (food, candy, photos, etc.)? They felt it was a miracle that someone would remember them, but we do!
Every day we pray to God for victory, for his protection, and for their to be peace in our country. Thank you for your prayers and supporting Slavic Christian Ministries: you have helped us and our church ministry tremendously. Despite everything we believe we will be victorious!” - Svetlana
Friends, because of your help, we have been able to send $1,400 to Svetlana to help her family, church, and encourage her brother-in-law and troops on the ground with simple things from home. They should be receiving more financial help from us soon.
We have helped over dozens and dozens of individual families with financial aid, given over $60,000 just to Kyiv region alone and a lot more money to the orphans in Romania and our ministry partners in Kharkiv, who are seeing the worst destruction of those we serve. Because of your generosity, we have been able to distribute $130,000 in the last six months to help with food, medicine, and supplies.
As I have mentioned beforehand, we are now focusing 100% on Kharkiv and Romanian orphans and refugees across western Europe, since our donations are down significantly. Ever since the war left the news cycle, we have seen a dramatic drop in donations.
If you really want to know what is going on in the war, please review all of our war updates on our website at slavicchristian.org/blog or search Ukraine or Kharkiv on Youtube. The war has “not” slowed down at all, and has actually picked up the pace. Whoever wins this war, either Russia or Ukraine, the eastern and southern portions of Ukraine are already a heap of rubble. In a few weeks, I will share with you the expectation of starvation to set in for many civilians in the months to come. The fear is already setting in for people living in the war zone of Kharkiv. We are preparing to the best of our ability for help people for the long term.
1. Donations to increase to help feed the people in Kharkiv. Pray more churches and individuals will become recurring donors (so we can set a budget for 2023);
2. My wife’s mother, who made it safely to Romania as a refugee, but is isolated away from all her family;
3. All of our ministry partners in Ukraine (six churches) to remain safe from the incessant missiles, bombs, and shelling that is falling on Kharkiv daily, including our friends and family who cannot leave Kharkiv;
4. Pray for all the children who cannot leave the war zone and are being traumatically damaged.
If you or your church would be open to donating to our ministry, please reach out to us or make an online donation at slavicchristian.org/donate. I am willing to visit you on any given Sunday too. You can make one-time or recurring donations on our website. Thank you for your prayer and gifts. God bless you in every way!
In Jesus’ love,