Russia (MNN) — Following the January 1, 2012 ban on U.S. adoptions in Russia, a team from the United States is on its way to Moscow to give share hope, love, and the Gospel with kids.
Greg Mangione with SOAR International Ministries is leading the team. "We'll be spending about eight days there traveling between at least five different cities and numerous orphanages around each of those cities, bringing the hope of the Gospel and gifts filled with needed items, candy, toys, and such."
It's all part of SOAR's Stuff A Stocking campaign. They were able to raising funding for 1,800 stockings this year.
While the ministry is primarily for the kids, Mangione says it does have an impact on the caregivers, too. "Often they only have a budget for one bottle of shampoo to share with 20 kids for a month or several weeks. They're used to having to stretch things just so thin. So, just bringing in those basic items is huge, both for the kids and the orphanage director and teachers."
This kind of ministry doesn't happen without the local church. "One of our primary goals is to [help] the local church and give credibility for them to be able to serve their people," says Mangione. "Unfortunately, a lot of the perception that the local people have is that the church is something weird or a sect."
Stuff A Stocking gives the community an "opportunity to meet [Christians] and see that they are people with a loving heart –there to serve without their own agenda."
While this is the conclusion of their Stuff a Stocking campaign, SOAR is now gearing up for their Easter basket ministry. Funding and volunteers are needed for this program.
If you'd like to help, click here.