Monday, November 28, 2016

Give a Gift of Christmas to Persons with Disabilities in Moldova

MOLDOVA. Christmas is a special time of the year when together with our churches and families we remember the greatest gift that has been given to us by God - His Son Jesus Christ who came into the world to bring us salvation from sin and death. During this special season, let us remember those who perhaps do not have a life as easy as the one that we have.

Natasha and I started this ministry to disabled persons after we found out in 2009 that our own son Roman had Autism and developmental disability. No parent wants to hear such news from doctors. Though shocked at first, we asked God to help us care for Roman. He was with us every single day of the last 10 years as we did our best to love Roman and take care of his needs. We know that many of you supported us in prayer, for which we are grateful.

For us, Roman means a lot. We love him dearly. Through Roman, God opened our hearts for ministry to persons with disabilities. In 2013, we came up with the project that we named "Roman's Touch" in honour of our son. Through this project, we provide educational help, food and respite for children with disabilities and their families. In the last 3 years, we provided iPads, books, supplied food and financial resources so that children with Autism could go to therapy.

This Christmas, we would like to give the gift of Christmas to persons with Autism and severe developmental disabilities in Moldova, the poorest nation in Europe, which remains economically devastated. We would like to provide meals and Christmas presents to dozens of children and adults with disabilities in two towns in Moldova. It takes just $15 to provide a Christmas dinner and a gift to one person with mental disability.

Exodus Church for Slavic People in Toronto Holds First Service

CANADA. On Sunday, November 27, 2016 at 5 p.m., we held the first service of Exodus Church in a rented space of Blythwood Road Baptist Church in Toronto. It coincided with the first Sunday of Advent. I (Oleg) preached on the text from Isaiah 9:1-7 emphasizing that Jesus the Messiah came to give us hope.

Exodus Church is a church plant that we and another Russian-speaking family that moved to Toronto from Niagara Falls started about a year ago. We chose this name because it symbolizes that it is a church for immigrants that left their home lands. At the same time, it is a community of people that look forward - to the "promised land" - eternity with God.

We aim to provide a place for worship, study of the Bible and fellowship for Slavic people that came to Canada from Russia, Moldova, Ukraine and other formerly Soviet republics. Language of worship service is Russian and English. At first, the congregation was meeting in our apartment. As we were looking for space where we could worship, Christians from Blythwood Road Baptist Church opened their hearts to us and offered us space, which we are now using for worship and fellowship.

Toronto is one of the largest immigrant cities in the world with its 55 percent of residents born outside of Canada. A secularized city, it is a mission field in itself.

On December 4th, we will hold an inaugural outreach service to which we invited our colleagues, friends and neighbours that speak Russian.

We thank God for this opportunity to serve Russian-speaking people in Toronto and thank many of you who prayed for this new beginning and continue to help support mission work globally.

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