Stories - Belarus - June 17


Belarus - June 17

Randy Schlichting | Jun 17, 2016

Early morning departure from Stolin. A lot of emotion was expressed as we said goodbye. Families have really connected with our team. Some of the families are nominal orthodox. So I think they saw a new type of Christianity. To paraphrase, their lives are compartmentalized: education here, music there, food some other place, relationships over there. They got a sense, they said, that for us, all of that is together and that there is a center. Indeed. It is Jesus in the communion of saints. 


So it is an amazing thing that Facebook will let you post in English and your Belorussian friend can hit the translate button when he receives it. God is using technology for His purposes. And many in our team will have continuing conversations.


It is a long road to Brest and very bumpy. We stopped by a local pastors church in Malarita to encourage him on the way. He and his wife and four kids came from Russia to church plant. He is bi-vocational and the church is in his home. They had a nice sound set up and the band led Shout Hosanna and There is a Light. The girls led Holy, Holy, Holy. 


It was a blessing to him and his family. They are in an outpost of the Christian movement. They have been poured out. They are tired. They were fed today spiritual blessings even as we were fed with great food from their table. Thank God that the church is being built in a thousand villages and small towns around the world. 


Brest is the sight of first major battle of WWII when Germany invaded the Soviet Union. It happened 75 years ago next week. About 9,000 Soviet soldiers were lost in the seven day battle with I think 2000 killed and 7000 taken to concentration camps. In total the Soviets lost more then 20 million in the war. That is huge compared to the  lives lost by other countries (except China) and the impact is still felt here. They would say they defeated Hitler because of the eastern front "war of attrition." Hard to argue with that with 20 million dead. But the war took something out of them and Communism the rest. Lots of fatalism.


In Brest we met another church pastor. They just bought an old building in the center of the city. They are growing. They are hopeful. 


Then on to Minsk. We leave tomorrow for Amsterdam. We hope to get there in time to tour the Corrie Ten Boom house. 

Team feels physically pretty good.