You may have noticed on the news lately that Russia is openly aiding the Russian Rebel Army in Eastern Ukraine, whereas in the past Russia said that it was not involved. You may remember some years ago I was conducting seminars for the military in Latvia and Ukraine, and many of the Ukrainian soldiers committed their lives to Jesus. Their morale was boosted, and they began to drive the Russian Rebel Army back almost out of the eastern province of Donetsk. This rebel army has been contained in the south-eastern corner of the Donetsk province – a long way from Odessa in the south west. There was a tense ceasefire for a couple of years, but this did not suit Russia. They have motivated this rebel army to defy the ceasefire and are sending weapons and supplies to get on with the war.
If this war spreads beyond that south-eastern corner it’s going to dramatically affect the economy of Ukraine. Goods won’t be freely available, and prices will soar. We may have to import from Poland like we did on a few occasions five years ago during the Ukrainian “civil war”. God knows what is going to happen, and I believe He has blessed us with 16 qualified builders to get the building work done on the House of Hope before supplies run short.
Peter and Sasha, our Odessa and European managers, and I, are working on a plan to speed up the building work on the House of Hope and stockpile building materials before the shortage occurs, like Joseph did in Egypt centuries ago. We’re even thinking of employing more skilled builders. The builders we have know of other qualified Christian builders who are unemployed, at this time. I’d rather employ friends of theirs who know how to work together.
We want to express our gratitude, as well as thanks from the Children at the House of Hope in Odessa. They are grateful for your faithful gifts that have sped things up at the House of Hope, with the 16 builders working in shifts, around the clock.
The building work on the four storey extensions is surging ahead, and the roof is being put on at this point in time. We’re trusting that as the interior of each section is completed, we’ll be able to start taking in more needy homeless children. I believe their documents are already being processed by Child Protection Services, with whom we’ve been working on these rescue missions for the last year.
The Odessa town council has apparently agreed for them to complete one dormitory room at a time, to get small groups of the planned Homeless Children in the House, rather than wait to the end of the building project, as long as the builders don’t leave materials and equipment in the passageways. They’ll get the lower floor’s rooms finished first. They have just taken delivery of a huge load of flooring insulation.
As a result of having 16 builders working around the clock on the House of Hope, this changed our building budget. They are saying that they’ll be finished around August – September. I hope so, but I’m still planning through to the end of the year. With the work sped up to more than twice the pace, this has changed our budget substantially. The costs of building each month have more than doubled. This is where your gifts are a wonderful answer to prayer. Thank you so much.
Our local teams are finding more needy children in the remote villages in the Odessa Province. The weather is cold, and our teams have intensified the Rescue Missions, to find more needy children in the remote regions.
In the last month, our local teams have given out hundreds of Survival packs of food and hygiene products to poor families and hundreds of needy children. Hundreds of picture Bibles were given to all whom they led to Jesus, day after day.
The lady on the right, in the blue jacket, is Mary (name substituted), she is 25 years old and the mother of two young children. Her husband was tragically killed in a work accident, and she is living is extreme poverty. Peter visited her for the first time and gave a Bible to her and her little boy. She was so thrilled, like she’d won a million dollars. She held the Bible and asked many times “Is it really mine to keep? Can I read it?”
The Rescue Teams are out 4 to 5 days a week seeking needy people and children. The other days they are preparing non-perishable food and hygiene products into Survival Packs to be given out. These Rescue Missions over the last 12 months have been amazing evangelistic crusades where, in this time of crisis, the Kingdom of God has grown substantially.
I love it when a surprising plan comes together. We have 50 children on the list that will be coming to the House as soon as dormitories are completed. Our manager, Peter collected two 14 year-olds last week to bring them to the House of Hope – Arthur (one the left) (name substituted) and Iris (in the yellow coat) (name substituted) from a remote village.
Thank you for your generosity and kindness towards the Orphans in Odessa. You have such a big share in all of this. We appreciate your partnership in the gospel.
Love and blessings,
Dave & Margurita “The Love of Christ compels us” .