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The JESUS film finds eager hearts in Ukraine’s prisons.

By October 29, 2004

Ukraine (MNN)–This month, Ukraine marks the 60th anniversary of their liberation from Nazi occupation during World War II.

That liberation from a physical bondage is also marked in a spiritual release. In the days up to this landmark, there has been a notable increase in interest in the Gospel.

While the JESUS film team originally had thought all who wanted to see the film already had, their next marketed effort drew a majority of area populations.

Buoyed by the encouraging response, teams also looked into expanding that outreach. The first effort to show the JESUS film in a Ukrainian prison had unexpected results…120 inmates came to Christ.

Since 2003, a permanent ministry has been established in the jail system. JESUS Film Project’s Brian Birdsall explains what has developed over the last year. “There’s a church cell group that meets in this prison, and that when people are released from prison, they go back to the local church that’s planted this sister church here in the prison, and there’s this great sense of ownership and camaraderie between the central church there in Kirovograd and the cell church that’s been planted there in the prison.”

Birdsall calls the JESUS film an unbelievable workhorse for the Gospel in Ukraine. “Ukraine, outside of the major cities, is still a fairly backward country. Even up until now, 25 years after the launch of the JESUS film, that wonderful two hour movie that has no special effects, is still a wonderful evangelistic tool in Ukraine.”

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