Thousands of people have died since the war in Ukraine started this year. Russia invaded the country on February 24. While many thought it would soon be over, the largest ground war in Europe since World War II continues, with no end in sight.
The scale of destruction in Ukraine “defies comprehension,” said the International Committee of the Red Cross. Millions of Ukrainians in war-torn areas have fled their homes for surrounding countries or other parts of Ukraine. Millions more stay because they are unable to travel or have nowhere to go.
Soldiers have wreaked havoc on Ukrainian farms, mining fields with explosives, stealing equipment and crops, and closing export depots. “My fields were destroyed by the shelling,” said one farmer.
Coincidently, almost exactly 100 years ago, Russia also invaded Ukraine. From then until the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991, Ukraine was under Russian (Soviet) control. Soviet dictator Joseph Stalin wanted to replace Ukraine’s small farms with state-run collectives and punish independence-minded Ukrainians. During his rule, a man-made famine claimed the lives of 4 million Ukrainians.
The devastating results are felt around the world in higher food prices and acute shortages. Ukraine, long known as Europe’s breadbasket, is—or was—one of the world’s biggest producers of wheat, corn, and sunflower oil.
Voices of Ukraine
But the effects of the war in Ukraine go beyond destruction. Let’s listen to several voices of Ukraine.
- Soldiers with machine guns broke into a believer’s house, beat and robbed him an d his wife, then took the man outside to shoot him. When he asked to pray before he died, they said, “Are you a believer?” After he affirmed he was, the soldiers replied, “Never mind, you can live.”
- A truck driver wept when a believer shared the Gospel with him. The driver talked about the terrible things he had seen while driving through Ukraine: destroyed buildings and vehicles and hundreds of bodies of people who were shot and burned.
- Sixty-year-old Mykola from the village Yahidne told a reporter about 130 men, women, and children taken from their homes at gunpoint. They were held in the basement of the local school for four weeks, crammed into a 700-square-foot room. “I was sleeping standing up,” Mykola said. “I tied myself to the railing with my scarf so I wouldn’t fall over. I spent twenty-five nights like this.” About forty to fifty children were among the captives, the youngest just two months old. “During my time here, twelve people died.”
What is CAM doing in Ukraine?
From our base south of Kyiv (formerly spelled Kiev), our staff members are delivering tons of food, medicines, literature, clothing, hygiene kits, and other aid to churches and feeding centers around the country. Other contacts and groups also pick up and distribute supplies from our warehouse.
God has protected our people on the many miles they have traveled to deliver aid. In one instance, a truck filled with supplies crossed a bridge, and ten minutes later a missile hit the bridge, destroying it.
We also plan to assist churches in repairing and rebuilding homes and apartments. The war has damaged or destroyed thousands of dwelling places.
Many Ukrainians are unable to prepare for the looming winter, since many businesses are closed and millions of people are unemployed. We are gearing up to help with the huge need for firewood and other heating sources.
As is often the case when in great distress, many unbelievers in Ukraine are more open to the things of God, making this a special time of spiritual opportunity. We want to support churches in their efforts to be “the hands and feet of Jesus” during this very troubling time. The needs in Ukraine are huge and will probably only increase as time goes on. Thank you for caring and helping this war-torn country! God bless you.
To help support the Ukraine Crisis program, please click below to give a one-time gift .