“I recognize your voice!”
The final week of One Hope Odessa was life changing in so many ways. It was the culmination of 11 months of pouring into the people of Ukraine through outreaches, pastor gatherings, evangelism training, feeding hundreds of people over Christmas, a city-wide youth conference, and much more. We had 25 Ignite Europe team members on the ground for the final week.
A local radio show interviewed us about the event. In the last ten minutes of the segment, the host gave me the mic to talk about anything I wanted. So, for ten minutes, I shared the good news of Jesus over the airwaves of the city of Odessa, and as I would soon find out, beyond.
The next day, we traveled 100 miles to the small village of Tartarbunary, where a social worker took us to homes of people who were in desperate need of food. The first person we visited was a single, elderly woman. We gave her a bag of groceries and our fiery evangelist friend and translator, Karen, lovingly shared the gospel with the woman. After a few minutes, she tilted her head and said, “I recognize your voice! Were you on the radio yesterday?” She was amazed that God would speak to her over the radio one day and then bring those same people she heard to her home the next day, two hours from Odessa, to tell her the same good news. And, right there, Karen led her in the sinner’s prayer! A divine conspiracy. Throughout the day, we were encouraged again and again that we were following God’s plan for One Hope Odessa.
Friday, we visited two universities—the Odessa University of Law and a polytechnic school—where our Christian illusionist shared about purpose and hope using illusions to grab the attention of the audience. Hundreds of college students attended, and students pulled the illusionist aside after the show to learn about this One Hope we profess.
On Saturday, we set up a large stage at the iconic Potemkin Stairs in the city center. There, we preached the gospel to the crowds. Many people heard the good news of Jesus Christ throughout the day and evening celebration. We collected their information and plugged them in to the local churches. It was a glorious exclamation point on the 11 months of pouring into Ukrainians through One Hope Odessa.
None of this would have been possible without your prayers, support, and financial contributions.