As the war in Eastern Ukraine continues to drag on the country is slowly becoming aware of the heavy mental, emotional, and psychological costs brought about by brutal fighting, death, and destruction.
Warning: The video below does contain some very graphic scenes.
Recently I came across this report from Vice News where soldiers and others who have returned from the war are interviewed. While there is more help for those who have suffered physically, there is often little or no help for those who have psychological trauma.
As a result many turn to alcohol and narcotics as a relief from their mental pain.
Watching the this report reminded me of the great need for the church to step in and offer the ultimate answer to all these problems, which is found only in the gospel of Jesus Christ.
The problem is that many churches and church leaders are not prepared to deal with those who have severe psychological trauma. Yet the need is critical, there are literally hundreds of thousands of men and women in Ukraine who are suffering mentally and emotionally as a result of this war.
These people are seeking help and answers. It’s an opportunity to offer hope that the church can not afford to miss.
In April our team of missionaries traveled to Eastern Ukraine. We also invited a pastor from Bosnia to come and share his experience as a soldier who fought for 3 years in a brutal war and as a pastor who ministered in a war zone.
Our goal was to encourage and equip church leaders from the war zone to effectively minister to those who have experienced the trauma of war.
This is just a start!
Last month I went back to Eastern Ukraine specifically to train these believers how to clearly and effectively share the Gospel. Without the Gospel, any other kind of help is only temporary!
The war in Eastern Ukraine might not be in the news headlines any more but the need for the church to help the traumatized, preach the Gospel, and offer home is greater than ever!
How you can help
Here are a few specific ways that you can actively pray for us and churches here who are ministering to those affected by the war.
- Pray Gospel of Light Church in Eastern Ukraine as they continue to minister to those on the edge of the war zone.
- Pray for churches in the occupied areas, for peace and provision, (prices are much higher in the occupied territories)
- Pray for opportunities this Fall in Eastern Ukraine including more specific training for church leaders.
- Pray for our outreach to disabled refugees here in Odessa, especially for their housing needs which are uncertain at this point.