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World News

This feels like our 9/11 says Christian minister in Kyiv

by Donna Birrell

Vadim Preobrazhenskiy is a Christian Minister living in Kyiv. He has been providing Premier with regular updates from the city since the Russian invasion began earlier this week.

This morning he spoke to Premier an hour after an apartment block was targeted just a short distance from his house :

“The fight was going on in streets just 100 metres from our house and 100 metres from our office as well, where we are based. It was a massive attack, they tried to capture or destroy an electrical station and power plant, which supplies electricity to the city. They tried to destroy the heating because it is Winter in Ukraine. 

“Our defenders are doing what they were not expected to be able to do. By the morning of this day, they pushed almost all Russians out of Kyiv. There are losses from both sides, many people have been killed.  They hit a high-rise apartment complex. It is an act of terrorism. It is like what happened in New York when the International Trade Centre was attacked. In that case, it was captured planes, but in our case, it was a Russian missile attack.”

Kyiv's mayor says no one was injured in the attack.

Vadim says that although European nations haven’t provided boots on the ground to help the Ukrainian forces, they are grateful for the imposition of sanctions against Russia :

“We are not alone. Maybe we don't have the support which we critically need. We expected that perhaps NATO would help us because right now Ukrainians demonstrated that it is possible to fight the Russian army, it is possible to defend our God-given land. We are fighting with one of the biggest and strongest armies of the world and we are doing it pretty much successfully as far as we can.

“We are very grateful to Great Britain for all the packages of sanctions you're enforcing against Russia, it will affect their military production, it will affect the economy. Unfortunately, it doesn't stop them immediately. But at least we are standing together as one nation, Ukraine and Britain in these very critical days. I believe not only for Ukraine, but for Europe, and perhaps the whole world because we don't really know what will happen after Ukraine.”

Vadim has been responsible for organising Ukraine’s National Day of Prayer since 2016. He says people are still determined to come to church despite the conflict : 

“Even in these circumstances, we keep spreading Bibles and keep preaching the gospel on a regular basis in churches which are still in relatively safe locations. We get together with people and pray for peace in Ukraine. Many people from different confessions are coming on a daily basis, literally risking their lives, because all the people are advised to be in bomb shelters.

But we are meeting in the churches and we have space to ask God to answer our prayers. We believe that what Britain is doing to help Ukraine, this is also God's answer to our prayers.

“Please pray to protect civilians and to not allow the destruction of not only the nation, but also the church so that we keep this unity of prayer for unity. 

“We are blessed that we have such Friends in Christ as the nation of Great Britain. Thank you for all the support of Ukraine. We appreciate it and we will pray for Britain here as well.”

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