Invasion, Day 2

Dear friends, 

Even as our worst fears have unfolded, we are trusting God, who works all things together for those who love Him. 

On the ground in Ukraine, the situation is changing hour to hour. Any news we send will be quickly outdated; but we want to share as much as we can so you’ll know how to pray.

Our staff are safe right now. They’re overwhelmed and fatigued, but staying strong. They’re coming together for prayer and for comfort, and they’re committed to the well-being of orphaned students and families as well as their own children. 

Zhytomyr is not seeing active fighting at the moment, but it is not safe. Many members of staff are staying at the Shelter or Day Center, as well as orphaned youth or families who feel unsafe in their homes. People are avoiding high-rise buildings that might become targets. Staff and local friends have heard shelling.

Zhytomyr is less than a hundred miles from Kyiv, and may be an important way-station for the Russian military as they try to take over the capital. Russian occupation of Kyiv may only be a couple of days away. Those who want to cross the border into Poland face long hungry waits, and any extra housing in the western part of Ukraine is full of refugees from active war zones. 

Please keep praying for Ukraine and for our people as they listen to God’s leading:

  • For Putin’s plans to be thwarted, and for Ukraine to remain an independent nation;
  • For the leaders of our country, and for world leaders as they respond to the crisis;
  • For Last Bell leadership as they make plans and decisions;
  • For the shedding of blood to be minimal;
  • For wisdom for our staff as they determine how best to care for our youth, many of whom are absolutely dependent on our support;
  • For protection for orphaned youth and other vulnerable people in our city and in our country;
  • For God’s supernatural “peace that passes all understanding.”

Today the paper local to Last Bell’s Indianapolis location, IndyStar, published a great article about the situation, including a brief conversation with our Executive Director Megan Hershey:

‘Tragic and surreal’: Ukrainian Americans watch former homes turn into war zones

And Stop the Cycle director Oksana sent this message to share with all of you: 

“It’s the end of February 25, and we’re getting ready for bed… In many cities of Ukraine (even in western Ukraine) sirens sounded, people were in bomb shelters, shots were heard, in some there were fierce battles. And in Zhytomyr all day today there was silence, there wasn’t a single siren (only a few automatic bursts during the detention of saboteurs). It seems that thousands of angels surrounded Zhytomyr today. All this thanks to the prayers of many of our friends! Thank you, dear friends. Please continue to pray for our restful sleep and the following days. God is with us!”

We’ll continue to update you as we have further news. Thank you for “praying without ceasing” on behalf of our youth. 

The Last Bell Team 

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Last Bell Ministries

Loving and restoring orphanage graduates toward life and community.

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PO Box 30671
Indianapolis, IN 46230
info@lastbell.org

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