Lutsk, Ukraine

Autumn 2016
Written by Timothy and Rhoda Sloan - Ukraine

Since last we wrote in Horizons the Lord has blessed us in the assembly in Lutsk, Ukraine. We asked you to pray for certain believers and unbelievers, and the Lord has come in and saved, and a number have been baptized.

We asked you to pray for Ira a young girl (21 years old) who was saved just after our 2015 conference.When she asked for baptism, she faced great opposition from her parents. However, she remained steadfast in her desire, got baptized and was received into the assembly fellowship. She is a credit to the assembly.

We also asked you to pray for Sasha and Olga and their two young girls Oksana and Katya. They are refugees who fled from the war in the East of Ukraine and settled in Lutsk. A sister in the assembly contacted them and invited them to the assembly meetings. They started to attend the Gospel meetings in September 2014, and Olga was saved June of 2015. Sasha struggled for many months, and the Lord saved him in February 2016. Both asked for baptism, and we had the joy of baptizing them during our 2016 conference, on Friday 15th July. They were received into fellowship, Lord's Day 31st August

We were further encouraged when two more refugees walked passed the Gospel Hall one day last September, saw the billboard and decided to come in and ask who we are and what we believe. Tanya is 52 and her son (Daniel) is blind and is 34. They started to attend, and we had the joy of receiving Tanya into the assembly fellowship at the end of June. What a story! Tanya was born in prison in Siberia where her mother did not want her. The governor offered any woman who would take the baby, freedom. One woman who only wanted freedom took Tanya home to the East of Ukraine and eventually Tanya was abused as a child. She left home and went to live on the street and soon became involved in drink, drugs and prostitution. Trying to escape this kind of life she went into an orphanage only to be abused there. At 17 she fled the orphanage, married an alcoholic and one year later when she was 18 her husband died. Her son Daniel was born after his father's death and suffered as a result of his parents' past life. After being in a coma five times and being operated on four times on his head he turned blind at 19 years of age. In February 2014 Mr Putin started to bomb Eastern Ukraine, and their little village home was destroyed. They fled west and arrived in Lutsk with only the clothes they wore. The local council placed them both in an old people's home. Daniel shares a room with a 76 year old man, and his mother lives on a different floor with a 74 year old woman. Both are saved and baptized and Tanya was received into fellowship at the end of June.

We would ask you to pray for two others who are faithful attenders at all the assembly meetings. Tamara who is in her 70's got saved and has asked for baptism and Yuri, a man in his 40's, shows an interest in salvation. Please pray for the both of them. Assembly meetings are being well attended with many unsaved in each Lord's Day, and our Sunday school has grown to the point where we have now a problem finding enough teachers. The assembly is in happy fellowship one with another, and we ask that you pray that this will continue.

We have just finished our 13th summer conference. It was held for eight days from July 9th to 17th. We had the privilege of having brother Dan Rudge for ministry along with his wife Elizabeth and their four young children Joshua 10, Abigail 8, Hannah 6 and Esther 4. Dan took up the seven churches, and the ministry was both instructive and helpful. Out of the past 13 conferences, James Colledge has been with us on 12 occasions. He had the responsibility for the children's meetings in the nearby village of Ozeraw. He excelled once again, and we had our largest meetings ever. On Monday we had 104 children present, and at the closing meeting, we had 130 children and 15 village parents present. In total over the eight days we had eight ministry meetings, one Gospel meeting, three open air Gospel meetings, distributed thousands of Gospel tracts, two baptisms and five short talks with all the young people present based on our brother John Dennison's book called "Choices".

On 4th June our 10,000 woven carrier bags from China with John 3:16 in Ukrainian on both sides arrived safely with us. We have had a fantastic reception as we distribute them freely on the streets of Lutsk. Into each bag we have put a beautiful New Testament with our assembly address on it, 1 Gospel tract, 1 Safety Certainty and Enjoyment tract, a flyer advertising our assembly meetings and a brochure "Who we are and what we believe". We advertised these bags on our billboard as well as on the large poster outside the Gospel Hall. There would not be a day when at least 30 or 40 bags would be given out to those who come to the hall and request a bag. God has promised to bless His word. As an assembly, we are thrilled to be engaged in sowing seed, and we would ask you to continue praying for this work.

Rhoda and I recently met the owner of the orphanage that is for sale. This building would be a great blessing to our work as it would mean that we could look after some of the Ukraine Child Care children on a permanent basis. It would also mean that we could convert the top floor into small apartments for believers like Tanya and Daniel. Keep praying please that the Lord will open up the way if it is His will.

Rhoda and I appreciate your continued prayers and practical support. We acknowledge that we could not do what we are doing without your support.

"Know therefore that the LORD thy God, he is God, the faithful God" Deuteronomy 7: 9.

Autumn 2016
Written by Timothy and Rhoda Sloan - Ukraine