The following is the August report from Brother Vitalii Rusnak from the village of Storojinet, Ukraine, of God’s work among the people:

I was on leave in July and involved in ministry in Patrauti, but I took a trip to the war area with humanitarian aids and the Gospel.  Over the following two weeks, I accompanied a group of refugees who visited several churches in Romania. There I was involved in preaching the Word of God and in translating for the refugees. 

August was a month full of trials and blessings. Since the beginning of this year, we have been planning the children’s day camp, which was supposed to be in the first week of August. The kids were eagerly waiting for this camp, but the evil one stood against us.

A young lady, who is living close to the church building and who comes from a very Orthodox family, participated to a youth camp in Chernovtsy. We don’t know what happened there exactly, but she didn’t sleep for several nights and started acting inappropriately, yelling during the preaching of the Gospel.  One night she tried to throw herself down from the window. Terrible things happened there.  I was in the Donbas area during all this time. I came back on Saturday and the girl’s relatives came to my place at midnight to ask for an explanation. The people in the village started saying that their girl was demon-possessed after participating to this camp organized by the repenters. When she got home, the girl didn’t recognize anyone and she was reciting parts from the sermons she had heard. The entire village was troubled and our church couldn’t organize the day camp anymore because of this situation. The non-Christian parents didn’t allow their children to come to our programs anymore. We usually had about 50 children who came from non-Christian families, but now nobody wanted to come. I tried to contact the family of this girl, but they don’t answer my calls. The church has been praying for this situation and we have asked for wisdom, guidance and peace in our hearts. In the midst of the turmoil, the Lord gave me a good idea. School started in September here and the school supplies are twice more expensive than last year. So we took the money that we had for the day camp and bought school supplies. Then we visited several poor families and offered the supplies to their children. This provided many opportunities to share the Gospel. Praise the Lord! We keep praying for this difficult situation, which has brought us together in prayer and has opened other doors for us.

I did more visits this month, visiting older people, because the young people are usually not at home in August. We had a sister in our church, Raveca (89). The Lord revealed Himself to her five years ago, but she was sick and had to stay in bed all these years.  I visited all her family members who were unbelievers every week and used these opportunities to preach the Gospel in her home. And the Lord always brought some curious people who listened to me. Sister Raveca had two great-grandchildren with disabilities. One was really open to the Gospel and we prayed together. Sister Raveca passed away this month and, after her funeral, Alexandru asked me to give him my phone number, so we could keep in touch.

Many non-believers heard the Gospel at the funeral and I was glad to see so many people who were open to the Gospel message. Praise the Lord!

A young lady from our church got married this month and many non-Christians attended her wedding and had the opportunity of hearing a sermon about the biblical perspective on the family.  After this wedding, the girl’s father started attending our church.

We also faced some unpleasant situations this month. Three young people from our church were doing the catechesis course, but I realized they were not prepared for baptism. So after several meetings, I had to tell them they were not prepared for baptism and this was not easy. They all come from Christian families, so they treated these things lightly. They wanted to be baptized just because everybody did. I was very troubled by this situation, but I had to make a decision. We have had a baptism every year since I have been serving the church in Patrauti, but this year we won’t have one. I pray that the Lord would change the hearts of these young people.

Don is serving as the HeartCry Coordinator for Eastern Europe. As an itinerant evangelist, his pulpit ministry is directed toward preaching on the inner life of the believer and the spiritual need of the lost. With HeartCry, his ministry includes organizing Bible conferences and corresponding with the HeartCry missionaries in Europe. He and his lovely wife Cindy live in Tuscumbia, AL.

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