As storm clouds gathered over Ukraine, carrying an ominous threat of war, the world watched. Destruction and death became the daily experience of the people of Ukraine. Amid the devastation and uncertainty of even the next hour, God’s people continued faithfully standing on His promises.
A WMP contact in Romania with missionaries in Ukraine sent this poignant message: “The threat and uncertainty are creating turmoil in the country and those around it, but our missionaries stand firm in the knowledge that God is in control, and that His Will will prevail. The tension has reached into people’s homes and villages, breeding uncertainty and worry. And yet, God is using that turmoil to help people be more receptive to Him. The missionaries are always telling us stories that demonstrate how God uses the darkest of times to speak into the hearts of many. The churches in Ukraine are fasting and praying that they will remain faithful and be a good witness to others, regardless of the outcome. I encourage us all to pray with them.”
In recent weeks, World Missionary Press has received a growing number of requests for Scripture booklets in Ukrainian. Surely the Spirit of God is moving among His people to reach out with hope and support through His Word.
Booklet orders have already been sent to four separate churches in Poland to serve those coming from Ukraine and also to minister to Russians who have come for safety. A team from the USA will be ministering to refugees in Greece, including new arrivals from Ukraine. WMP’s national coordinator in Finland has asked for a new supply of booklets in Ukrainian to meet the opportunity.
A group in California is sending humanitarian aid for Ukraine, including WMP Scripture booklets in Russian and Ukrainian. They sent an urgent request for more booklets for the next shipment of aid. Feed the Hungry requested 20,000 Scripture booklets to accompany their response to the situation in Ukraine.
Our national coordinator in Denmark sent an urgent plea for more booklets in Ukrainian and Russian. Noting that Denmark was willing to receive 40-50,000 Ukrainian refugees, he wanted to be prepared. Some refugees had already arrived, making the timing urgent. Now 100,000 refugees are expected!
One request was particularly meaningful. Back In 2015, as the flow of immigrants from the Middle East and Northern Africa surged into southern Europe, churches realized not only the need for humanitarian aid, but also the opportunity to share the truth of God’s Word to those who had never known the One true God and His love for them. Because of the many different languages, churches in Hungary contacted WMP for help. Andrew F. wrote from Hungary back then about outreach to Muslim refugees arrested at the border and taken to the train station for a few hours before traveling on to Budapest and the refugee camps. There were about 20-70 people per day. Very few spoke English. They helped with food, clothes, medical care, played with the kids, and shared the gospel when possible.
One of the churches who had discovered WMP literature in those days sent a new request to share with Ukrainian refugees who were arriving in Hungary in large numbers. Thus, a relationship established for immigrants from afar years ago is now serving refugees from a neighboring country. God always goes before and prepares the way to accomplish His purposes.
It is important to realize that many Ukrainians are remaining in their country and many national churches are standing with them. It is also important to think as well of those in Russia who also are suffering the consequences of the war in their country. In addition, Christians in many countries are opening homes and giving much to receive those who have fled. In each situation the Word of God is their Help from Above.
Many times in the 61-year history of World Missionary Press, we have seen God prepare us for the unexpected. Praise God, we had Ukrainian booklets already available to fill each of the above requests.
“My heart breaks for the people in Ukraine,” wrote Cornel S. (See page 4.) “Since we started ministry in Ukraine in 1991, God has opened doors that I never thought would be possible.” He has seen souls coming to the Lord, disciples being made, and Christian Camps developed for children and youth. “I’ve seen church buildings built and people coming to Christ to fill them. Today is a sad time in Ukraine; however, we have a God who is still in control!”
[You can bring Help from Above to the people of Ukraine and to places around the world. Every donated dollar provides for the production of 28 powerful Scripture booklets for people around the world in their own language. An investment of $100 will touch the lives of 2,800 people; $1,000 will impact 28,000 people who need to have hope in God.]
“Preparing blessing bags for the Community Day in the park.”
“Every year I prepare blessing bags with booklets and coloring books for children, crosses, devotionals and booklets for teens, and Meditations in the Psalms and blessing rocks for the adults.
“We usually see about 250 children, 100 teens, and 200 adults at the annual Community Day in the Park. We love being a blessing to others, and your resources permit us to do much more than we could do on our own.
“The children love gathering at the table and picking a gemstone with a cross painted on it to go with your Who Am I that a KING Would Die in My Place? booklet and coloring in the God Loves You! booklet as we tell the stories!
“I love your outreach materials, small group studies, and of course the coloring books. Thank you for your commitment to God’s work!!!”
—Jennifer R., West Virginia
I first heard of WMP years ago through Nappanee Missionary Church. I had been honored to serve in Malawi as a missionary through the Rafiki Foundation (2004-2007) but was called back home due to family emergencies. I knew that once I retired, I wanted to do something related to mission work again; however, at this time I am committed to staying in this area. I’d been thinking of volunteering for WMP when a good friend also decided to return to volunteer here, so the time just seemed right. I’ve been volunteering for the past 16 months (although it doesn’t seem that long).
What I like most about volunteering at WMP is knowing I am playing a small part in this enormous ministry. When I learned just how many countries the Word is going out to, and in so many various languages, I was awed. I had seen first-hand how much this type of ministry meant to the people of Malawi while I was there, so again, I feel it a privilege to participate in what God is doing through WMP. Another favorite part has been meeting the wonderful friends I get to work alongside here.
When I’m not volunteering, I love to be outside, either doing yard work or walking/hiking in the summer. In the winter I read more, but also like to have some inside home-improvement project going.
Romania is strategically located in Eastern Europe to serve as a hub for accessing WMP literature. A new ministry partner, Partners in Evangelism International, received a shipment from WMP in 2020 to reach into these nations with the Word of God. PIEI also supports missionaries in Ukraine who have used WMP booklets in their outreach. God’s Word is at work!
WMP: Cornel, would you share a little of your background and ministry?
Cornel: I emigrated from Romania as a religious refugee, with my family, during the communist regime in 1983. I know what it means not to have literature, to be persecuted for your faith, and to sacrifice in order to put the Word of God into the hands of people. I got involved in evangelism here in the States, then immediately after the fall of communism in Romania and then in Southern Ukraine, and with Partners in Evangelism International since 1990. Our ministry has established partnerships with national missionaries currently in 13 countries. As president of PIEI, I am involved with the overall leadership of these ministries but have closer and hands-on involvement with the ministries in Romania and in Ukraine.
WMP: How are the Scripture booklets incorporated into the ministry?
Cornel: Being fluent in Romanian, I travel often, getting to know our national missionaries who are doing the work of evangelism, church planting, and discipleship as well as train and recruit short-term mission teams to serve alongside our missionaries. We have done a lot of door-to-door Bible and literature distribution during free clinics for eye glasses, blood pressure testing, etc. We pray with the people and give them literature before they leave. Our missionaries and teams go on home visits, especially in rural areas, taking food, school supplies, all kinds of needed goods, along with Bibles and literature. They also rely on having some literature to give first-time comers when they visit their churches and when they have questions. The message of salvation especially is so important to put into the hands of people. It is the most important message that someone will receive—a challenge to make an eternal decision.
Cornel: Once the shipment reaches our facility in Romania, it’s very easy to distribute from there, and quite fast. During Covid, the process was unusually slow due to travel restrictions and curfews. Once most of those were lifted, and the people in charge of the distribution received a clear directive, the Romanian language literature left the facility and got into the hands of eager pastors, missionaries, workers, teachers, students, etc. Challenges also exist especially when a facility such as ours in Romania becomes a hub for other countries. It would be marvelous to have more Russian and Ukrainian materials for our missionaries there.
We are thankful to join together in reaching people with the gospel for the kingdom of God. We thank you for your partnership in ministry, and for your faithfulness in providing literature free of charge. This is a dark time, and more than ever, people need hope and God’s salvation in order to come to the Light, through God’s Word, His message of hope and love.