Bob Marsh, Impact Team Leader for the Europe and Mediterranean Region, relates the following story from Ukraine:
The Converge Ukraine Relief Fund has distributed nearly one million dollars to local and national church leaders in support of ministry to displaced people in that war-torn nation. Recently, Vasyli Gutsalo, one of the regional leaders we’ve worked with, sent a video update that that included an interview with Pastor Vitaly, in Lisove, in the Cherkasy Oblast. The small village has been completely overwhelmed by the influx of 3000 displaced people from the occupied eastern states. Their small church, which also has a “Retreat Center,” is doing all it could to house and feed them.
The pastor was asked what his greatest need was, he said, “We need a new well. The village is overrun with displaced people, and the well we have cannot keep up.” After viewing the video, the Lord prompted me to action. I asked Vasyli how much a new well might cost. It was about $7,500. Thanks to the generous giving of churches and individuals to Converge’s Ukraine Relief Fund, we had enough in the account to meet the need. I talked with Mark Bjorlo, Regional President of Converge North Central, and together we approved the expense. It fits perfectly with one of our core values in the fund management – “Provide resources to assist the local churches of Ukraine to minister effectively in their communities for lasting gospel impact.”
I contacted Vasyli to let him know that the funds were on the way. He was very excited! He called me later to tell me that when he told Pastor Vitaly that he had the funds, he could not believe it – and yet he DID believe it! In fact, he had already told the well company to come and begin, because he knew that somehow God was going to provide. The day Vasyl contacted him to let him know that the funds were available was the same day the well drilling team arrived to do the work! He stepped out in faith not knowing that God had already provided the funds.
We have no doubt that all the funds we have distributed have been put to kingdom purposes, but somehow this one really touched my soul. That well will serve the village’s immediate needs in serving the displaced, and it will stand for years to come as a lasting testimony to the impact and love of Christ through the local church. May the words of Christ find deep meaning in that village, “Everyone who drinks this water will be thirsty again, but whoever drinks the water I give them will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give them will become in them a spring of water welling up to eternal life.”
Here is a video with a special note of thanks from Pastor Vitaly to all who have given to the Converge Relief Fund.
Bob & Carol Marsh, Missionary
Working alongside national movement leaders to help catalyze gospel movements among the least reached.
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