Mission groups prepare for the worst in Ukraine

By December 1, 2004

Ukraine (MNN) — While the political situation is still in question in Ukraine, missionaries with Send International are prepared for whatever happens. As many government leaders are suggesting a re-vote, protesters continue to flood the streets.

Send International’s General Director Warren Janzen says they’ve been meeting with officials at the United States Embassy, Ukrainian Christians and other mission organizations talking about managing a crisis should one occur. “We have a number of sources of information flowing in. We have a team there and a team here processing that information and just keeping abreast and ready to move if we need to move.”

Janzen says while the political tone is changing a bit, their workers are still concern. “Our folks are concerned because of the amount of people in the streets in Kiev. However, there are a number of signs that are indicating to us today that things are moving back from a crisis point.” Transportation is flowing normally, less police presence, and the American Embassy hasn’t issued any warnings.

The election snafu has actually given Send International, ministry opportunities. “A lot of our Christian believers, Ukrainians, are going into the streets. They’re bringing food, water – they’re bringing tracts and they’re evangelizing into the crowds that are in the central square in Kiev. They’re seeing the time of their lives and they’re rejoicing in openness and the friendship of the people.”

Send is planting churches, providing theological education and they’re doing community development ministry in orphanages and homeless shelters. So far their ministry work hasn’t been affected.

Janzen is asking people to pray for safety and that Send can capitalize on this ministry opportunity. “There are anywhere from 100,000 to 500,000 people in the streets of Kiev who have come out of the shell, as it were, of being suppressed by the communist era and are now wanting to have a voice. That, I think, is lending itself to an openness to consider Christianity at the same time.”

Leave a Reply