A New Class Of Students At BVBIU...

Hello dear brothers, families and churches. 

Ukraine is really a big country in the heart of Europe. It's a country where economic development is slow, but prices on utilities, clothes and food are continually getting higher. Ukraine is willing to become a part of Europe. The quality of service is still Soviet-like, but the prices are European-like. Church of Christ in Ukraine is in a great need of worthy leaders and wise administration. No one is surprised now by seeing a foreigner in our country, and it differs from how it was 20 years ago. People don't come to seminars after announcements "Guest from the US or practice your English using Bible, etc." Ukrainian church needs well-prepared teachers, preachers and elders. Our institute is taking care of providing churches with prepared ministers who are ready to preach the truth and be a good example of righteous life. 

In July I had an opportunity to preach and visit churches in different parts of Ukraine. First two Sundays I preached in the Eastern part of Ukraine: Illovaysk and Gorlovka, and then my wife and I traveled to the Western part of Ukraine. When looking at the map of Ukraine to see where the Churches of Christ are, it's easy to notice that 85% of churches are situated in the Eastern part of Ukraine (the border between the Eastern and the Western parts is the river Dnepr), other 15% are situated in the Western part accordingly. In Western Ukraine we have visited two congregations in Chernovtsy and Ternopol, and we also had a meeting with a preacher of another congregation in Ivano-Frankovsk. It was an interesting trip. I had an opportunity to visit with preachers and members of those congregations and to preach.  I also was able to find two new students who will start studying this fall.  Western Ukraine is a huge region; it's a smaller part of our country, and it is in a need of our prayers and people who will be active in evangelizing. Some cities (like Lviv, Uzhhorod, Lutsk) with population over 500,000 people do not have churches of Christ at all. In future, if it's possible, it would be wise to open another Bear Valley extension school in this part of country. 

Right now we have 9 new students who are ready to start studying on September 3. God blesses us with people who are willing to commit their lives to serve people and the Lord. 

In August we plan to help Central Church of Christ in Gorlovka with VBS. We also have to find an apartment to house new students, get the classrooms ready and to visit some churches of Christ if possible. 

Apostle Paul writes in 2 Corinthians 9.2: "For I know your eagerness to help... and your enthusiasm has stirred most of them to action." Because of your help, we continue training ministers for God's Church. In future, church in Ukraine will become independent, and it won't survive without experienced and sound teachers. While preparing preachers now, we build a strong foundation for future generations. 

I want to thank you for spiritual and financial support of my family and ministry at the BVBIU. I know that many members of the churches never saw me in person, but continue to be active participants in supporting this work. We need you, and having new students, we need additional finances. I trust the Lord and you. If you are willing to know more about Institute's financial situation, contact Howell Ferguson. 

God's blessings to you.

Your brother and co-worker for the Lord's cause,
Dennis Sopelnik

To see Dennis’ report with pictures, please click here.

Posted on August 5, 2012 .