From Lxxx (Day 155): Dear brothers and sisters, Today, July 28, Ukraine celebrates the Day of Ukrainian Statehood. It is officially called the Day of Baptism of Kyivan Rus-Ukraine. The holiday is celebrated annually on July 28, it is a memory day of Prince Volodymyr in the Orthodox church. Prince Volodymyr Svyatoslavovich was a pagan until he was 30 years old. During his reign, he realized that the polytheistic religion had exhausted itself. He saw the difference of life in European countries. Volodymyr accepted Christianity from Byzantium and soon organized a mass baptism of people in the Dnieper river in Kiev. After Kyiv, other cities of Kiev-Rus Principality accepted Christianity. The exact day and even the year of the actual event is not known for certain. Most historians believe that Kiev Rus was baptized in 988. Not all people immediately abandoned their pagan traditions. Pagan customs were rooted out for several more centuries, and many of them have survived to our days. Many people still consider themselves to be Christians just because they were baptized in Orthodox church and keep some church traditions. That’s why it is so important to preach the Word of God that brings real changes into the lives of people and pray for the work of Holy Spirit.
We had a good night, there was an air alarm around 4 o’clock, but it was not long and we could sleep again. Later we found out about the rockets directed to our region were launched from Crimea and they were successfully destroyed in the air. But five rockets hit Kiev region at night. In the morning other regions of Ukraine were bombed.
Last evening we had our church zoom prayer and our elder Vxxxx couldn’t come, Vxxx, his wife, told that he couldn’t stop coughing. We ask God to deliver him from suffering.
Yesterday I talked to Vxxx, our counselor in Odessa. She is very busy with the work in crisis chat. On the one hand it’s a wonderful opportunity to respond to many people and address their problems, but on the other hand it’s not always possible to do follow up and to see the progress.
Vxxx together with her pastor and some people from the church continue the ministry of soup kitchen. They have new people and it’s nice to talk and make some relations. Odesa is a big city and we see the difference. In our small town there is an atmosphere of community and people who come from big cities are naturally involved in groups and relations with people.
In Odessa it’s somehow different, it takes more efforts to involve people in groups. Among new people who came there was a mother with two children. She works at the market, sells different things there, her son helps her. Both her children study music – her son plays the violin and her daughter plays the cello.
Please, pray for our country and for our ministry.