War in Ukraine
Responsibilities of a Christian Theological Institute In the Middle of War
These days time is passing by quickly. At least for us, as we are committed to daily work in helping our compatriots. However, I understand that in a contemporary situation when news comes every minute, not receiving even a short update from me every day may feel like an eternity.
Please understand me right, it is not because we do not have news, it is because we have so many things to do and not many people who can help me with reports. I will do my best to keep you updated as often as possible.
As I was meditating over the book of Ezekiel today, I thought that the story of God's presence leaving Jerusalem has many similarities with the feelings that many Ukrainians have now.
Here is some important news about our ministry:
We are very thankful for the constant support of our ministry. We do our best to put into action the resources that have been entrusted to us immediately to meet the needs of our churches and the volunteers we work with.
Currently, there are three ways how we are processing financial transactions to help with the needs of the people in Ukraine suffering from the war:
- We have transferred part of the raised support money to the legal account of our Theological Institute in Ukraine. From this account, we are transferring money to the legal accounts of our partner organizations in Ukraine involved in the ministry to refugees. Also, using this account we are making some purchases at the local stores.
- Part of the raised funds goes to the accounts of some individuals who earned our trust through the years. Most of them are staff. We are using fast transfer services to make these transfers. We cash out this money and use it to purchase necessary items in places where digital payments are not available.
- Besides the raised support, we have access to an emergency savings fund we have been accumulating for the last 7 years.
This is very helpful, as we have to make a lot of cash purchases and we do not have to wait till the donated funds appear in our account. Helping quickly is critical sometimes. At the moment, we still have about 60-70 thousand dollars available in this fund. As this is a temporary solution, all this money needs to be reimbursed to Institute and our borrower in the future.
Sometimes we hear from our donors that they want their donations to be passed to the people in need immediately. Though we understand this concern very well, we should mention that the safety of these funds is also a high priority for us. We do not want lots of funds being accumulated in Ukraine.
We ask our supporters to be patient and trust our accountants who administrate the money transfer process. They have already balanced the transaction flow, so the money is not stuck in Ukraine. We can already pre-plan expenses for 3 days ahead, which helps us to distribute the transferred money accordingly.
We appreciate all the contributions coming from our dear friends, but at the moment we think there is no need to create additional channels for transferring money.
If we see that the situation changes and quick transfers are needed, we will contact our partner church missionary pastor or the church accountant on an individual basis and try to resolve this issue.
Just for your information, one of our accountants is in Germany now, the other one is in Kherson. Despite the distance, they coordinate their work online.
The Ministry Update: Food Supply and Evacuation
Last night two of our buses returned from Mykolaiv (Nikolaev). As usual, they brought some food to local people and returned with 35 evacuated people. Unfortunately, due to the urgency and high risk of the situation, our drivers do not always have time to make photo and video recordings of their trip.
Every day we are administrating several trips.
For example, today (Monday, March 14) we were working on the logistics of 5 vehicles:
- One of our cars took 4 girls to the border.
- One of our trucks went to Novovolynsk today to bring 22 tons of products for our mission to Mykolaiv.
- We are expecting one minibus from Lviv to bring medicines, baby food, and diapers.
- Another bus was sent to take people to Chernivtsi
- Our cargo van was used to purchase food in Ivano-Frankivsk. Naturally, not all days are that busy, and I do not have time to control all the logistics processes.
We are trying to keep a record of the cargo delivered and people evacuated, but we do not always have time for it.
Update on our Campus
The campus remains occupied by the Russian militaries. Many of them left the campus, but there are still quite a few. The campus buildings were not shelled and are still functional.
We also know that as a result of the war, the buildings of 4 other evangelical schools were damaged to a different degree. Please pray for ours and other schools to be able to return its property.
First Victim of War Within Our Theological Christian Institute Family
Yesterday I received sad news about one of our alumni. L. K. was killed in the war. L. has been involved in the life of the Ukrainian army for a long time. We contacted his wife offering evacuation for her and her three children, but at the moment, she refused to evacuate. Please remember them in your prayers.
Please keep praying for us and the ministry we do in the name of Jesus Christ to our fellow Christians and our neighbors who are suffering from the war and do not have basic means to survive.
President of one of the first theological schools with state licensed programs in Ukraine.