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Dnipro Mission Blog

DHM Visits a Baptist Church in Central London

 

On Sunday 30th September I was invited to Blackheath and Charlton Baptist Church in central London to speak about the work of Dnipro Hope Mission. It was a great occasion and it was a privilege to preach at this wonderful church and to lead the congregation in worship. 

 

DHM Chair of Trustees, Joshua Searle, leads worship at Blackheath and Charlton Baptist Church 

 

During the service we prayed for Ukraine and Varduyi Searle (Treasurer and Trustee of DHM) played a solo piece entitled, "Молитва за Україну" or "Prayer for Ukraine". We're always grateful for these occasions to bring to people's attention the suffering of people in the Dnipro Region of Eastern Ukraine. We depend on the support of our supporters, especially churches in the UK. We are currently planning our trip to Ukraine in order to deliver a minibus to our mission partners in Dnipro. We will soon have a sponsorship page on our website so that you can support this work.  

 

Thanks for your support!

 

Joshua with some of the leaders of the church in Blackheath 
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DHM Plans the Delivery of a People-Carrier to Our Mission Partners in Dnipro

We need your help to raise money for a people carrier (MPV) car for our mission partners in Dnipro. Our aim is to buy a good-quality 9-seater MPV that can be used as a tool for ministry, enabling local Christians in Dnipro to provide pastoral care for people in orphanages and disabled homes in Eastern Ukraine.
 
One of the most urgent needs that we have identified in the Dnipro Region is the means to take out residents of disabled homes and orphanages for day trips out to local attractions – e.g. parks, sports centres and beaches. This urgent need has been confirmed by numerous conversations with local church leaders, social workers and care home volunteers.
 
In Ukraine, the state-run care institutions (e.g. orphanages and disabled homes) do not have the means to take residents out of the care homes. The result is that all the people in the care homes spend literally their whole lives inside the confines of the building. In most cases, these buildings are in a state of disrepair and conditions are often unpleasant or even unsanitary.
 
Therefore, one of the problems is that people in the care homes (disabled homes, orphanages) in Eastern Ukraine are essentially forgotten about by society. These people have no money and no possessions. In many cases, they don’t have any living relatives. They depend on outside help, which is simply not available. The government does not have the resources to address people’s most basic human needs, such as fresh air and the means to get out of the building.
 
If these people had the opportunity to take even occasional day trips out in a minibus, this would immeasurably improve people’s quality of life. As well as allowing time for recreation, such trips would have additional benefit of improving the mental well-being of the residents, creating a healthier and more harmonious environment in the home itself.
 
For many years we have been in contact with Rev. Sasha Boyko, who is the pastor of Vasylkivka Baptist Church in the Dnipro Region of Eastern Ukraine. Pastor Sasha has been praying for a long time now for a minibus that would enable him to visit various care homes and orphanages in the region and take the residents out for weekend activities.
 
Under the most adverse circumstances of poverty and deprivation, Sasha has already become something of a roving pastor, travelling throughout the Dnipro region, offering prayer, material help, medicines and encouragement and support for the forgotten people, such as those with disabilities or diseases, the elderly, the orphans and refugees. If he had a minibus, he would be able to take out teams of young people to go out to these forgotten people, offering prayer, music, games and pastoral care.
 
The trouble is that at the moment Sasha only has his little old Fiat Punto to drive around, so he’s unable to deliver large supplies of medicines and equipment and he’s also not able to arrange day trips out for the people he meets in the care homes he visits. He’d like to bring these people to church, so that they can receive a warm welcome by the Christians in the local churches around the disabled homes. If people are unable to come to church, then with a minibus, Pastor Sasha will be able to bring church to the people!
 
Having received an amazing gift from one of our partner churches in Surrey, we are now planning to buy a minibus in Germany and drive it non-stop to Ukraine in December this year. The minibus will belong to DHM, but we will leave the keys with Sasha so that he can use it for his ministry work. 
 
Something as simple as a large people-carrier car will have a massive gospel impact for potentially hundreds of needy people in the Dnipro region.
 
We will soon have a fundraising page on this website, where people will be able to sponsor our trip to Ukraine. Please continue to watch this space.
 
Thank you for your support.
 
The DHM Team
 
Pastor Sasha this summer with Ivan, a resident of a disabled home in the Dnipro region Joshua with Svitlana at a disabled home in Eastern Ukraine. The people-carrier would enable people like Svitlana and Ivan (who spend literally their whole lives confined in the disabled home) to enjoy occasional days out          
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DHM Partners Organise a Summer Camp in Kyiv for Disabled Young People

Our partners at the Church of the Transfiguration, a Baptist church in Kyiv, recently organised their annual camp for people with disabilities. This camp is conducted for disabled children and adolescents and is held in Voronkiv village, just south of Kyiv, for a month in summer. DHM recently sent a delivery of disability equipment, which was given to the disabled people at this camp. Our mission partner, Alexander, who is one of the leaders of this Church and who helps to run the camps, sent us the following report:

"This camp is a wonderful gift for these people and their parents every year. They look forward to the opportunity of spending time among God’s people in the beautiful surroundings of the Ukrainian countryside. They enjoy living in comfortable premises and they receive the continuous care of leaders and volunteers from members of the Church of the Transfiguration. Obviously, such conditions contrast with their ordinary days. Many people with disabilities live at uncomfortable flats provided by indifferent authorities. Very often they are stuck due to the absence of lifts. Therefore, the accessibility, respect and care that they receive from the Church are gratefully received.

Interesting programme and careful involvement in this year are rewarded by the smiles and cries of joy of these precious people, which we experienced during this year's camp.

The most precious result is the fact that these people listened to the gospel continuously and they were filled by the Word of God. Great joy has been achieved as a result of the camp: three persons have given baptismal vows to Jesus. Praise to God!"

Here are a few more photos from the camp...

       
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New Creation International Church Hosts DHM

It was a great pleasure to visit New Creation International Church in Lewisham last Sunday.

The lead pastor there is one of my former students, Rev. Gideon Okeoma. Pastor Gideon graduated last year from Spurgeon's College and is leading a church plant in a deprived area in south London. He is a gifted preacher and has started a significant gospel movement, which shines the light of Christ in the London borough of Lewisham. It is amazing to see the incredible work that our students are doing after graduation - it's definitely one of the best things about being a lecturer at Spurgeon's College!

Joshua with Pastor Gideon at his church in South London

I was invited to preach on one of my favourite Bible passages from Philippians 2. I spoke about the suffering of Christ on the cross and that if we want to know what God is really like, we should take a look at Jesus. My message was that by dying on the cross, Jesus was revealing to us what God is really like: He is the God whose most basic essence is self-giving love.

After my sermon, I was invited to speak about the work that DHM is doing in Ukraine. I spoke about the war in Eastern Ukraine and about what many of our friends from churches in the Dnipro Region were doing to help people in dire need. 

It was such a blessing and encouragement to me to have been so warmly received by the wonderful congregation at New International Church. They showed a real care and concern for the people of Ukraine. When the pastor prayed for Ukraine and for the work of DHM, I felt the presence of God. I was on holy ground.

We give thanks to God for churches like New International Church in Lewisham that support the work we do in Ukraine. With little worldly wealth or practical resources, these faithful brothers and sisters are rich in faith and their prayers and support mean more to us as leaders of DHM than we could ever express in words.

We celebrated the birthday of Pastor Gideon's daughter

 

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DHM Dispatches High-Quality Disabled Equipment to Ukraine

A team of DHM volunteers has just delivered a van-load of disabled equipment to our mission partners, based at a Baptist Church in Kyiv, Ukraine. This church runs a remarkable ministry for disabled people on the margins of society.

Rev Alexander, leader of Transfiguration Church in Kyiv, with his team of volunteers and a few of the disabled people who have joined the church as a result of their ministry

Although the church volunteers have been able to offer pastoral support over several years, the leaders of the church have been praying for an opportunity to give practical help to the people they feel called to help and serve.

This is where DHM has been able to help. Over the past year, DHM volunteers have built up a good relationship of trust with the leaders of the Baptist Church in Kyiv and we have been able to perform due diligence checks on the church and it has been a great encouragement to learn about all the amazing work that this church is doing. Here are a few pictures, which give a glimpse into their ministry with the disabled:

 

 

This weekend the trustees met to disassemble the zimmer frames for transport to Ukraine. We were helped by the wonderful Kirk family: Afi (a DHM trustee) and her husband and two young sons.

 

 

 

The boys, Adriel and Zachary, helped us to dissassemble the equipment that was destined for Ukraine

 

Once again, I'm reminded of what a privilege and a blessing it is to encourage and enable local churches in Ukraine that are doing amazing work in sharing God's love with all people in quiet, unpretentious, yet deeply impactful ways. It's a blessing that none of us at DHM takes for granted.

We will only be able to continue to send essential equipment to Ukraine if we are supported by people like you. Please contact us for a standing order form if you are able to support our work.

Thanks for your support.

JTS

Pastor Alexander baptises one of the disabled members of the church who came to faith through the disabled ministry of the church

 

 

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