Prayers clear shoes from customs in Russia

By October 6, 2006

Russia (MNN) — Many of you have been praying and God has answered those prayers. Yesterday, the Humanitarian Aid Committee signed the paperwork needed to release the 22,000 pairs of shoes from customs, allowing Buckner to begin distributing shoes in Russia.

Buckner Orphan Care International’s Amy Norton says, “We have another shoe team coming at the end of next week. They’re going to go to orphanages and take these shoes and socks to these kids and our staff will continue to deliver them after the team is gone. And, of course we’re delivering warm boots to the kids that we’ve purchased this week.”

The trip MNN is currently participating in is breaking new ground for Buckner in rural areas outside St. Petersburg. “These are orphanages that no one has ever been into before with groups and it’s certainly the first time we’ve been in and for many of these children it’s the first time they’ve been exposed to the Gospel.”

The shoes are what makes the ministry possible. Norton says these visits won’t be isolated. “Our goal is to continue to spread the Gospel in these orphanages and work with the local churches here. We have several local churches that we’ve met on this trip, that we’re getting involved in the orphanages. That’s what we hope to do is get the people here involved with the kids and we just support them.”

However, it can’t happen without people. Norton says $100 a month can support a follow-up team member which is an investment in evangelism. “Having the salaries for the staff, the transportation to get here, the supplies that we need is all a funding issue and of course the more staff we can add the more children hear the Gospel so we would really love to have support ministry.”

The Gospel needs to be presented to protect the children. In one orphanage we visited this week, a few of the boys are selling themselves in prostitution. The new director of the orphanage says hearts need to change in order to see this evil defeated. Pray for protection for the boys. Pray also that their hearts would be open to the Gospel.

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