Compelling Community. Growing Disciples. Reaching Our Neighbors. Located in Wheaton, IL.

Support Ukraine

 

As we receive updates from our missionaries and others who are supporting relief efforts in Ukraine and for Ukrainians, we will post the information here.

Christian Radio for Russia: As the war continues in Ukraine, and the conflict expands to the southern Black Sea port city of Odessa–which now experiences daily artillery attacks–our Christian radio network continues to broadcast the Gospel to both Ukraine and Russia!  Proclaiming the Christ and searching the Scriptures for the deepest answers to mankind’s most troubling questions is what our missionary staff engage in day after day.

As Ukrainians face death and destruction around them, there is HOPE and a certainty of eternal life that is the essence of the Christian message. Now more than ever, is New Life Radio needed to reach these people for the Lord!
NEW LIFE RADIO is the fruit of the Covenant denomination’s efforts to engage in mission to Russia, even as we now reach the Slavic world. The Covenant is no longer able to send missionaries to Russia, so that is why it is important to support NLR, getting into every community in that nation via mass media.

From Brad and Lucie Kaspar (Josiah Venture): Below is an update from our teammates Ben and Kristy Williams (from Wheaton), who are directly involved in the Ukrainian refugee crisis.

  • Friends, it is hard to know what to write or how to communicate the sorrow experienced since February 24th, 2022. Our family begins this update w/ a famous Ukrainian poem, written in 1847 by Taras Shevchenko after he was exiled from Ukraine for promoting national independence in the face of RU imperialism.

The sun sets, and dark the mountains become,
The little bird hushes, the plain has grown dumb,
The people rejoice that slumber is nearing,
And I look : and I fly with my heart in my dreaming
To a dark orchard in far Ukraina;
I fly there, I fly there, pondering deeply,
And it seems that my heart is at rest, has grown tranquil.
Dark shadows spread over plain, mountain and grove,
A star twinkles out in the blue, high above:
Star, O Star! —and the bitter tears rain —
And hast thou, then, risen too, over Ukraine?
Do the dark eyes search for thee yet
In the blue heavens? Or did they forget?
May they slumber forever if they have forgotten,
Never to hear of my pitiful fortune.
By Taras Shevchenko (1847)

  • A Day in the Life of “Refugees Serving Refugees”
    Last time we wrote, we were living in our car for 47 hours on the Ukraine-Polish border. On February 27, we arrived in Czech Republic. Josiah Venture has its European headquarters here and have graciously allowed our family and other JV Ukraine staff wives/kids to live and serve at their hotel. Some of our teammates are serving at a similar hotel set up in Poland, an hour away. Many of our Ukrainians are still in UA. While all our hearts are aching for home, God has helped us to set up quite an operation from here…
    • Sometime between 12am-5am, a bus from western Ukraine filled with Ukrainians fleeing the country arrives in the EU arrives at one of our hubs. Check them into our hotel. Try to go back to bed.
    • 7am: We wake up to either a bad dream about the war, a phone call about a Ukrainian bus arrival or humanitarian aid delivery, or to a message about a bombing in the night. We spend some time with God b/c without Him, we will not make it through this day.
    • 8:30am: We walk up the hill to our Ukrainian Processing Hub at the JV CZ hotel. The kids grab a hot breakfast and hide in different places in the hotel for their UA online school.
    • 9am-11am: Each day in which we receive a bus, we host an orientation for the Ukrainians who have arrived under terrible stress and trauma. We start building trust, help them feel safe, and offer them hope in their next steps to find semi-permanent housing, visas, jobs, and a local church in CZ or a surrounding country.
      We show them the hotel, the humanitarian aid rooms filled w/ clothes and toiletries, the prayer room, the special tables for UA guests, the art therapy space, the onsite mini pharmacy, the laundry facilities, the giant kids’ playroom, the hotel down the hill when we run out of space.
    • 11am-12pm: Gather volunteers, including the town fire dept., to load the bus w/ literally tons of humanitarian aid. Ben has even been procuring semitrucks for maximum efficiency…such new experiences.
    • 12-12:30pm: Have lunch w/amazing Ukrainians. Ask them to share their stories…each story of the terror that they have lived through and each miracle of God as they made it all the way to CZ.
    • 12:30-6pm: Help Ukrainians fill out their “PLAN” worksheet and start searching for housing.
      a) I already have a plan in the EU.
      b) I have a plan to go somewhere but I need help getting there.
      c) I have no plan but I would like to ___.
      Enter their data into the database to begin searching for their semi-permanent location, trains/flights/rides, and Christian families who will love them, connect them to a church, and help them adapt.
    • 6-8pm: Have dinner. Hear more stories. Listen well. Cry some. Love them well. Wonder when this nightmare will end. We host an “evening program” where we read a Psalm, talk about the war, share stories about how Ukrainians found us in CZ, point out the hand of God in their lives yesterday, today, and tomorrow, help them understand the blessing of Christian community when people really try to live as Jesus did, and pray for those still in UA, and that the war would end soon. God is at work and people are putting their faith in Christ!
    • 8pm-11pm: Spend time w/ our kids and the Ukrainians we live with. Do admin work like call our UA staff to figure out if/when we can evacuate people from the hottest war zones, order 10 tons of food (rice, sugar, macaroni, oil, flour, salt, canned meat, protein bars, baby food) to go out on the next shipment, edit trauma care documents, thank hundreds of donors, host 10pm staff meetings on Zoom.
    • 11pm: Fall asleep reading the news about how, sooner or later, Ukraine will win the war. Believe it, and await a great miracle of God.
    • Then we go to bed, wake up, and repeat once again. Day 37… A Day in the Life of “Refugees Serving Refugees”
      Last time we wrote, we were living in our car for 47 hours on the Ukraine-Polish border. On February 27, we arrived in Czech Republic. Josiah Venture has its European headquarters here and have graciously allowed our family and other JV Ukraine staff wives/kids to live and serve at their hotel. Some of our teammates are serving at a similar hotel set up in Poland, an hour away. Many of our Ukrainians are still in UA. While all our hearts are aching for home, God has helped us to set up quite an operation from here…
  • Your prayers are so needed right now. We truly believe that God has been holding Ukraine. Ukrainians believe that, too. In our experience, they are not upset with God but rather thankful that He has sustained Ukraine through all of its trials.
    • Pray the war would miraculously end, that the enemy would be destroyed, that Ukraine would suffer no more loss, and that we could return home.
    • Until we can return home, we need to eventually transition out of the hotel (tourist season) and into a town and the local church. Please pray for each of us and our teammates, because our hearts do not want to make such a step.
    • Pray for the hearts of the people who receive our materials. We are handing out a JV-made devotion of 22 Psalms of hope, a Ukrainian Gospel of John with the plan of salvation in the back, and Beyond Disaster – Christian material from the American Bible Society on what to expect/how to survive trauma and crisis. Pray that people would choose to follow Jesus, the true Rescuer from pain.
  • Give to JV’s Ukraine Crisis Fund

Covenant World Relief is also providing critical care to those affected by the war in Ukraine. You can support their work by clicking HERE.