Kevin Reilly on behalf of Edik and Liana – Ukraine
The noise of the war, for many of us, has retreated to the background of life; but for Edik and Liana and the church in Uzhgorod, a life lived in wartime continues to present its many challenges.
Refugees continue to pour into western Ukraine from the east, whilst the cost of living continues to rise to record levels. Rental prices have doubled as demand outstrips supply for accommodation for millions of people who have relocated to the relative safety of western Ukraine; and as inflation rises in Ukraine (as it does elsewhere) fuel prices and the cost of food and life’s essentials is becoming increasingly expensive and all this, of course, is in the context of a broken economy and the turmoil of war.
It is remarkable that within such a context, we are able to share with you stories of courage, love and sacrifice. The gospel is being lived and preached in Ukraine. The darkness can appear overwhelming but the light of the gospel continues to advance upon it and so we have stories to share with you.
But please, as we read these stories from a distance, let’s bear in mind that these testimonies have been hard fought for. We give thanks for them and are rightly encouraged, but let’s also continue to uphold Edik and Liana and the church in Uzhgorod in prayer. We rejoice in the hope of these stories for sure, but we also remain patient in Ukraine’s tribulation, and persevering in prayer. (Rom 12:12)
#1 We fled seven days after the start of the war. 4 more days we traveled from Kyiv to Uzhgorod. here we were able to rent a small apartment. My wife, daughter and mother-in-law sleep on the old sofa, and I on the mattress on the floor. it was like that for over 2 months. Then the owner of the apartment raised the payment twice. Thank God Pastor offered us to move to a hotel. Now we have conditions that we only dreamed . We can safely engage in church service, serving God and people. Thank you Dear Friends, you are made miracles in our lives.
Dear brothers and sisters! Thank you for your help. On February 24, the war began. On March 2, I was forced to leave because of the intensified bombing of Kharkov. Me and my children and their families hid in basements. I thank God for the miracles He has done for us. My son, with no driving experience, decided to leave. At 10.00 am we left Kharkov. There were 5 of us in the car. and a dog. The road was difficult. At 16.30 we were informed that there were two explosions from rockets. The air wave knocked out our windows, the doors simply tore apart – this is the second miracle as not one of us suffered in this.
I got to Uzhgorod on March 7th. The first thing I did was start looking for a church. God brought me to Salvation Rock Church – Edik and Liana’s church. Here I found a family and the participation of pastor Eduard (Edik) in our lives. I rent an apartment with my children. Rent is expensive. We live together and our Granddaughter began to go to church. Thank you very much for your financial support and food assistance and may the Lord bless you and meet all your needs. With love, the Shevchenko family.
We are from the ATO zone (Anti-Terrorist Operation zone) and we came to Kyiv on vacation. In Kyiv, we found ourselves in a difficult life situation and with virtually no means of subsistence. We left Kyiv two days before the start of the war and were in Western Ukraine. We planned to stay in Western Ukraine for no more than three days, while the documents were being prepared in Kyiv, which we needed to sign, after which we were to go home to the Donetsk region (ATO zone). But on February 24, we learned in the morning that the war had begun and people were leaving Kyiv en masse.
We left the Ivano-Frankivsk region to the border with Slovakia in order to get home through Europe and Russia, but my husband was not released. For a month we lived with a Christian family in a house together with other settlers, because we were going home and we did not have the means to pay for housing that had become very expensive. Then we came to the Church “Rock of Salvation” in Uzhgorod and to pastor Eduard (Edik) and his wife Liana, where after serving by God’s grace they offered us a separate room to stay in a hotel and from this time they helped us with finances! We thank the Church of the Rock of Salvation and all of you, dear friends, for your help in this situation! We give glory and praise to our Lord for the answers to our needs through brothers and sisters in Christ Jesus! Amen.
Edik Writes: Hi Kevin. I am sending photos of our regular distribution of food aid to refugees and the poor last week. We still have them, unfortunately as the war, drags on. The authorities are taking people to the front en masse right now and the Russian army fires missiles at the civilian population of Ukraine. They are terrorising civilians throughout Ukraine so that the population of Ukraine will force Zelensky to stop his defence of Ukraine and sit down for negotiations.
A few of the many photos of the distribution of food aid that Edik sends us are below.