Russia (MNN) – Today is the International Day of Rural Women. While the United Nations focuses the day on women’s roles in sustainability and climate resilience, we’re taking a different approach. Slavic Gospel Association’s Eric Mock tells us about the women behind the pastors in rural Far East Russia.
Women of Far East Russia
Mock describes Far East Russia as an area as large as the contiguous 48 states of the United States, but with 5 percent of the U.S. population. The region presents many challenges for ministry and daily life.
“I was just in Far East Russia, and over and over again, I saw the unsung heroes of many of these ministries. In fact, I told many of the men [that] they married up,” Mock says.
“They have incredible wives who not only cared for family… but also were striving side-by-side. They’re the Sunday school teachers. They’re the Bible study leaders. They are the evangelists. They are the ones that are ministering to the countless widows.”
Mock says these women are an amazing gift to the Church. As a pastor in northwest Illinois, Mock knows firsthand how important his wife is to his ministry, and he knows other pastors would say the same.
“By God’s design, we see this beautiful, complete package where He designed men and women in the covenant of marriage to complete each other…The image of our triune God is most visible when a man and a woman are living life on mission, for the sake of the Gospel, displaying Christ among the nations,” Mock says.
Gulmyra, whose husband pastors four churches, moved with her husband to an area in Far East Russia where shamanism is prevalent. Every week she helps her husband prepare for ministering to various villages. While he is away, the mother of two maintains their home and cares for the day-to-day operations of the church. She also conducts ministry with local women and children.
“She really became a 24-hour a day missionary, not only to her family but to the church that was there,” Mock says.
Reach Russia Now
Today, we want to recognize women like Gulmyra and their hard work while offering a chance to support them through the Reach Russia Now initiative.
Through Reach Russia Now, Christians can help support ministry happening in Far East Russia. A financial gift helps fund missionary pastors and church plants. It also helps support the ministries many women help run, such as Orphans Reborn or Immanuel’s Child.
“This is a great opportunity to build a relationship with these missionary pastors, to send notes to the wives and encourage them,” Mock says.
Want to send an encouraging note to the incredible women in Far East Russia? Call 1-800-BIBLE-50 or visit www.sga.org.
If you would, pray for the encouragement of these women. Pray for their steadfastness, patience, and courage. Ask God to bless their ministries and their marriages and pray for joy in their circumstances.
Header photo courtesy of Slavic Gospel Association.