Dear Family and Friends, September 2019
Greetings from Ukraine! A Trip to Smila: I was not able to visit my friends in Smila for several months, but finally I made it there! Thankfully the roads were slightly improved too! Pastors Dennis and Oksana are doing well, working on their home improvement project and praying that they can move back into their home before it gets cold outside – as they don’t have any heat in their rental house. When I saw the work they’ve done on their home, I was so happy! After all these years of sacrifice, they will actually have three bedrooms! It honestly is well-deserved, even though their house will still be quite small, at least now there will be some privacy and even room for a dining table! Sunday we enjoyed a glorious time of worship and the Word with them at church.
The First Women’s Breakfast in Smila: Pastor Oksana knew how we’ve held women’s prayer breakfasts for many years now in Krivoy Rog and asked that we come help her kick off their first breakfast. We had a powerful time of prayer, the Word, and fellowship. I know that all fifty-some women that attended were all encouraged as they went home that day!
The Village of Zalevky: While in Smila we went to celebrate a 40th wedding anniversary of a dear couple from the church. Sasha and Luba live in a small village called Zalevky just about six miles outside of Smila. Now this tiny village is split into two parts, the central part and another section that used to be a different village which is located almost three miles from the central section. This far away part of Zalevky is where Sasha and Luba live. They told us how the public transportation no longer operates in this part of their village. If people want to go into town, they must walk almost three miles to catch a bus and that bus only runs several times daily. Thankfully Sasha and Luba have a car! But, because they have witnessed to so many of their neighbors, there are now about ten Christians that want to go to church on Sundays too! With only one car, they take turns riding with Sasha and Luba! I literally had no idea this was the situation! It’s really not that far from the city, and here are people truly hungry for God who just want to attend church with no possibility of attending. Juliana had the idea to find a vehicle to rent to bring them to church. So Pastor Dennis is now looking for a reliable driver who will bring people from the village every week to church. (If you question why someone from the church doesn’t offer to drive, it’s because there are very few car owners at church – and most of them are already picking up people around town!) I promised Dennis that I would help to find funding for this little project, because the cost would only be about $15-$20 a week! I think this is something we can do for those who want to attend Church! If you’d be interested in helping fund the transportation costs for those from Zalevky – just designate that part of your donation to Peterson- Pastor Support. Even on one check, you can still designate money to different funds; in the memo line write- Leann Peterson Support -$x amount and Peterson Pastor Support – $x amount. Thank you!
Family Day Festival: At the beginning of September, sixteen churches in Krivoy Rog held a family festival in one of the local parks. There were many different activities and a stage with live music! We had a table with free balloons and free candy with promises from the Bible. Plus a huge prayer team! In total we gave out all our balloons and almost 1000 candies with Bible verses. We had the chance to talk with many people and pray for them! It was awesome!
Evangelism: We hit the street once again with our free coffee, tea, and hot cocoa too! Many people came by and we handed out 260 hot drinks. Even those who didn’t stop, we would try to make them smile! One lady with her granddaughter stopped for some cocoa and she just stood there by the tea table for about a good 25 minutes. She talked with us for a bit, but she said she just didn’t want to leave the atmosphere. The only way she could describe it is that “It just felt so good to stand there with us.” Even in that you can simply see that there’s something tangible about God’s presence that draws them to Him! Another teen girl, after drinking her coffee, came back a few minutes later and asked one of our volunteers for a hug! I also had a deep conversation with a man about what the difference is between our Church, the Orthodox church and Muslims. It was a good conversation and he left saying he definitely had a lot to think about. Simple things can be so powerful: a smile, a hug, something to think on, and of course giving them a taste of God’s presence! We’re planting seeds for eternity!
Greenfield: This past week we decided to teach the ladies to worship, after all if we can teach our kid’s camp to worship, surely we can teach them too. We picked one worship song with a simple chorus that says: “Thank you Jesus”. I was simply amazed. There was such a peace and calm, even some of the nurses joined in worshipping!
Pray Points and Praise Reports:
- Praise Report from last month’s newsletter: Daniel is now attending church regularly and Diana actually ended up enrolling in a Bible school last minute! Hallelujah! Robert is still struggling but continues to come to church every week.
- Pray for our Women’s conference on October 5th! We have well over 100 women already registered! Pray that God touch them mightily!
- Pray for Pastor Dennis and Oksana, that their construction work ends quickly and all the finances they need will be provided.
- Pray for me as I travel to the 20th annual FIRE International Mission’s conference in October! I’ll be there for just 10 days before returning to Ukraine.
- Pray for the Dorms as we begin our ministry there again, pray for students with open hearts!
- Pray for Church of Truth leadership for healing, refreshing, fresh vision, and safety!
Your Missionary to Ukraine,
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About Leann Peterson
Leann has been serving in Ukraine since 2003. During that time she has witnessed the Holy Spirit touch a multitude of people, bringing them salvation, healing, freedom, and deliverance. Ukraine has seen it’s fair share of hardships: hopelessness, corruption, alcoholism, high divorce rates, addictions, depression, and poverty. But God can change all of that! He has given Leann a heart for the people of this nation. She believes that the Holy Spirit will be poured out upon Ukraine and that there will be a mighty move of revival all around the land!