Visiting Heroes of the Faith in Ukraine
I’m at the Pittsburgh airport, waiting to go to New York on our way to Ukraine, accompanied by Pastor Steve Crombie, Pastor Mervin Strother, and Dasha Strother. We will fly seven hours to Amsterdam, have a layover, fly three hours to Bucharest, then another layover, and will end our trek with a flight into northern Romania Suceava. The next morning, we will cross the border into Ukraine to meet with all the folks we have been supplying with food and medicine.
Thank you for your help! We have promised these dear people we would not forget about them. I have a suitcase full of ski caps, and the Strothers have a suitcase full of scarves as gifts to our friends. Little items like these that we take for granted are treasures to them.
As you are probably aware, the Ukrainian army has recently achieved victories across a whole sector. While this, of course, is good news and we pray that this may somehow bring this ugly thing to an end, they are now bracing for counter-attacks. One of our trucks has made it into the liberated towns. They tell us the needs are great for those who were in this war zone. They have also told us the security is heightened.
On our last trip in, we passed through military roadblocks and anti-tank points. We had papers identifying us as Christian relief workers, and we were escorted through with no issues. They are telling us that they have now been turned back, in some cases. The heartbreaking news of mass graves and destruction may be part of the reason. The bottom line is, security is tighter. Pray for our deliveries to get through. We have experienced God's favor and are proclaiming it as we go.
We will be meeting with about sixty-five Ukrainian and Romanian leaders. Some of these folks have become dear friends in the last seven months. They are the ones we read about–true heroes of the faith. Our goal is to encourage them. It is one thing to tell them they are not alone and more help is coming. It's believable when we show up! NRP and our covenant churches and friends are demonstrating the love of God in a very real way. Thank you! Thank you!
Please cover us and this pivotal time together with those who are in the trenches. We are going to hear about many real and pressing needs. When you’re up close and these are not just statistics, when you look into the face of that need, it is a tremendously moving time. You feel both overwhelmed and honored to be that close to offering life-saving friendship and help.
Thank you for being a covenant partner in this great effort. We are making a difference! Please remind your friends there is an ongoing need. All help is greatly appreciated.
Thanks for standing with the least of these in their hour of need.
NRP Team Leader