Donetsk is one of the two Regions of Ukraine where the Separatist Armies have taken control of Ukrainian territory. All of the heavy combat in this war has taken place in the Regions of Donetsk and Luhansk.
Kramatorsk is located in the Donetsk Region and is less than 60 miles from the capital city of Donetsk, which is currently occupied by the Separatist army. Six of our staff including Nita and I are heading to this city and would ask for your prayers. Half are leaving this Saturday, November 5th by car and the other half the 6th by train. We will be in the East from November 6th until the 9th. Kramatorsk was previously occupied by Separatist forces and one of early battlegrounds in the war. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Battle_of_Kramatorsk
Things to know about the conflict in Ukraine.
- Since the revolution at Maidan Square in Kiev, around 10,000 people have been killed in the conflict between the Ukrainian Army and Separatist Forces in the East of Ukraine.
- Over 4,000 have been killed in the Donetsk region.
- Over 1 million Ukrainians have fled the Eastern Regions as refugees.
- The United Nations estimates that more than 1,000,000 people are going hungry in the Separatist controlled side.
- The economy is in a shambles. The Ukrainian “Hryvnia” (Ukrainian currency) at the onset of the Maidan Revolution was 8 Hryvnia to the Dollar. It is now 26 Hryvnia to the Dollar. The people hardest hit are those on pensions who have no means to raise their income. Incomes which were worth $200 per month are now worth $50. Inflation has spiralled upward, with no end in sight. This chart shows how the value of the Ukrainian dollar continues to fall.
- Many churches in the “Separatist” controlled area, that are not Russian Orthodox have been confiscated. Several pastors have been killed and many have fled to the Ukrainian controlled areas. Many non-Russian Orthodox churches are operating underground. These are the churches we are making contact with.
Six of us from God’s Hidden Treasures will be going to Kramatorsk in November, because we want to minister to the people who have been most severely impacted by the war in Ukraine. We will be teaching churches how to minister to the disabled in Ukraine through visitation and providing mobility aids. This ministry is already happening in Kramatorsk where we have already trained Vladimir, who has been distributing wheelchairs in the area.
However, our hope is to expand this ministry and work with churches on both sides of the battle lines. We are praying that many pastors from the underground churches in the Separatist side will come to the seminar, in addition to pastors from the Ukrainian side. We will begin by taking one wheelchair at a time across the border (we have already given several wheelchairs that way, and hope to see this effort greatly expanded). Following is an email I received recently from our contact in Kramatorsk regarding the seminar:
I would like to share with you our happy news. This news is about that the seminar will take place in Kramatorsk and already known across all the Donetsk region. The pastors from the nearest cities expressed their great desire to attend this seminar. Personally I would like to say that I am waiting for this event and meeting with you with great impatient.
Yesterday I spoke to Tatiana by phone. We agreed that I would visit you in Belaya Tserkov and we would take 20 wheelchairs and 50 walkers
This is Vladimir on the right with Pastor Scott from God’s Hidden Treasures at the office just outside of Bila Tserkva.
God’s Hidden Treasures, Ukraine currently supplies mobility aids and other assistance to 7 cities in Ukraine.We have given over 3,000 wheelchair just in our city of Bila Tserkva. Kramatorsk is roughly the same size as Bila Tserkva, and is in close proximity to many other cities in the Separatist controlled territories that are much larger. We are already planning to send our next shipment of 250 wheelchairs directly to this region.
To provide wheelchairs to this region is a big leap of faith for God’s Hidden Treasures, but one we know God is calling us to make. Please pray that the Lord would open all the doors that we can begin this ministry, and that he would supply us with enough wheelchairs and mobility aids to reach the great need in these cities. In our wheelchair ministry, we work only with Christian churches or ministries, and require that they minister to the people, just as we do. That involves establishing long-term relationships with them, and carrying the love of Christ into their lives through word and deed. As always, thank your for all your prayers and support.
God’s Hidden Treasures