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Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Ministry Trip - Chelyabinsk Russia

Two weeks ago I had the privilege of ministering in Chelyabinsk Russia which about 1000 miles east of Nizhny Novgorod. To get to Chelyabinsk I took a 30 hour train trip. Karen did not accompany me on the trip as she was busy collecting documents for our new application for permanent residency.

I arrived in Chelyabinsk on Friday afternoon and was greeted by Pastor Sasha, pastor of Cornerstone Church. Sasha, his wife Olga and a small team came to Chelyabinsk 5 years ago. Since that time they have planted a growing church of about 80 people and opened 3 drug and alcohol rehab centers. I had been invited to Chelyabinsk by Sasha to preach for their 5th anniversary celebration.

Pastors Sasha & Olga

Celebration Service
The trip was a lot of fun. We had services Friday night and Saturday morning. Pastor Sergei Nepomnashihk was the speaker. On Saturday evening there was a praise and celebration service and on Sunday afternoon I was the guest speaker.

Graduates from the Chelyabinsk Rehab Center
Testifying During the Saturday Service

I also had the great joy to speak in a Russian Foursquare Church near Chelyabinsk in the small town of Argyush. This church is very small, but actually has it's own building, and as far as I know it is the only "Foursquare" church building in all of Russia. Pastor Oleg, the pastor is an associate pastor of the Word of God church in Chelyabinsk and every week he drives the 100 kilometers to Argyush to minister. Word of God church is registered under the Foursquare Association of churches in Russia.

Foursquare Church Building
Argyush, Russia

The Sign Says
God is Light!
On Monday I was able to teach at two of the three church rehab centers. I love being with these young men and women as they learn about new life in Christ and break free from their addictions.

One of the Chelyabinsk Rehab Centers
Men and Women in Rehab
Brothers in the Second Rehab Center
I am constantly amazed by the dedication and perseverance of the young pastors that I know in Russia. These men and women are working in difficult situations with very little help. They have great faith and are some of the most gifted men and women I have ever met. Karen and I count it a great privilege to work alongside them.

Pastor Sasha and wis wife have invited Karen and I to visit Chelyabinsk again in the spring. We hope to minister to the married couples in a seminar and to teach in all the rehab centers. We love working and living in Russia.

A Young Couple to Whom I Ministered
Please pray with us for healing in their marriage.

Here are 3 short video clips from the conference

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