Political instability in Ukraine concerns Christians

By January 13, 2006

Ukraine (MNN) — Last year’s Orange Revolution winner and current Ukrainian President Viktor Yushchenko has demanded parliament rescind its vote to dismiss the government. Lawmakers voted Tuesday to fire Prime Minister Yuri Yekhanurov’s government over its agreement to pay sharply higher prices for gas imports from Russia. Top government officials say parliament’s move was illegal. Yushchenko blamed the vote on opposition lawmakers he said are trying to create instability in Ukraine.

Barry Gardner with Russian Ministries is concerned about the political instability because Yushechenko was a friend of religious freedom. The instability could cause Yushchenko his job. Gardner says while he’s concerned, he’s not as concerned as he would be if it were happening in Russia. “Ukrainian Christians are really on the move there. So, there’s a lot more religious activity in that country. And, that means that it’s unlikely that even a new person coming in who would not be as friendly to missions would be able to cause a really harsh repression that we might fear in Russia.”

While the political problems haven’t affected their work in Ukraine, Russian/Ukrainian bickering could impact their work in Moscow as many of Russian Ministries Moscow staff members are Ukrainian.

Gardner is asking Christians to pray. “Pray that religious liberty continues to be free in Ukraine so that we can continue to preach the Gospel, that’s number one. Number two, of course, we’re concerned that the Ukrainian people don’t suffer in this winter season from the gas price dispute.”

The issue has been sent on to Ukraine’s Supreme Court and the political future of Yushchenko’s and his cabinet is uncertain.

Leave a Reply