A solid foundation in Ukraine

Dear brethren, families and churches,

The Lord's church grows thanks to strong families and good leaders.

The time passed by so fast that it seemed like we had just started the new school year and yet in a month we should have our  graduation ceremony.

This year we graduated 4 students and one more diploma will be given to a student who didn’t have the opportunity in 2014 because the warfare in the Eastern Ukraine had just commenced. Every year our Bible Institute graduates leave us and most of them start serving the local congregations. Since the foundation of the Institute about 200 students have been graduated. They were faithful men and women, well trained to labor in the Vineyard of the Lord. About 20of them became full time Ministers. At the first glance it may look like it’s not an impressive number but taking into account that the Church of Christ in Ukraine had been established only about 30 years ago, I think that we are on the right way to success. In additions to the preachers we have trained 9 Ukrainian Instructors. They are fully trained to teach our new students. And we are expecting our faculty to grow because currently we have 5 students in Masters’ Program.

The church in Ukraine, in my opinion, needs sound and wise leaders more than anything. It’s time for us to mature. And the congregations that are not taught right and not prepared to be independent are not able to function properly. Last week on April 29th we had a one day seminar in the city of Dnipro on the subject of “Godly Worship”. We studied all aspects of Sunday worship. It was a great time of fellowship for the church leaders and preachers who represented a lot of Ukrainian congregations. Some people have difficulties accepting the truth even in simple matters that are taught in the BIble. A lot of time they are motivated by their own understanding or influenced by denominational traditions. This is just one more reason to have sound schools of the Bible. The more well trained leaders the Church gets the better are our chances that the church will grow and get prepared to meet Christ. 

For the next year we have 5 potential students. They are ready to join our program. These people are willing to sacrifice their time and their jobs to study the Bible extensively and get trained to be good servants. So we are starting our fundraising efforts for these people. Our Bible program lasts 2 years and we need to do our best to make sure we are faithful in keeping our promises to these people until they graduate. 

We also have plans to establish a new congregation in the small town of Krevosheitsy, Lord willing. The town is located in about 1 hour drive from Bela Tservka. Our student Valery Nikora and his family are willing to relocate and buy a house. He knows many people there and we pray God will provide for this opportunity. We need to establish new congregations and we understand how much work we have ahead of us. Currently a lot of denominations are present in Ukraine. Most people have already made their choices about their religious preferences. It’s very difficult to find new people who are looking for truth. Please pray with us for this ministry.

We have a lot of exciting events scheduled for May. Brother Jim Sherman comes to teach, we are to host Youth Group meeting and also our graduation is on May 27th. 

We are grateful to all of you who support our Bible Institute and encourage us to faithful service. We need your prayers and appreciate your help. 

Your brother and co-worker in the Kingdom of the Lord,

Dennis Sopelnik.

Posted on May 8, 2017 .