An orphan's life

Caring Hearts

The village of Kalininskoye is located in the Kherson Region, ninety-three miles from Kherson, almost in the neighboring Nikolaev Region. It’s quite a large village. You can get there by bus from Kherson, but the bus only leaves twice a day. Overall, the level of upkeep and infrastructure in Kalininskoye leaves much to be desired, if the truth be told.

 There are two orphanages in this remote village. For almost 10 years now, Agape Ministries staff has been serving the children in these orphanages. There are no churches in the village. “Who has been ministering in the orphanages, then?”  you may well ask.  Missionaries have. Answering the call of her heart, a young lady left her home in the Volynsky Region of Ukraine and moved to Kalininskoye. For nine years now she has been faithfully ministering in the two orphanages there.

However, thank the Lord, she is not completely on her own as she ministers. She has the constant support and encouragement of the churches from the forested sweep of her native Volynsky region.

This young lady’s name is Boguslava. “But wait” you ask, “ Is she living in Kalininskoye all on her own?” No, she has other young ladies who come and live with her, usually for a year or so. Boguslava has been the only one who has held on, year in and year out, faithful to her calling to minister to orphans.

She does have regular visitors, groups that make the trip from Volynsky region to support and minister with her. This fall, there were two groups that came on short-term mission trips: the youth group from Holy Trinity Church in Lutzk, and a group from the city of Novovolynsk. Some of them had made the trip before, while for others, it was a new experience. Many of the visitors were old friends for the children in the orphanages there, and have stayed in contact with them, writing and calling back and forth with them.

This fall, one of the groups planned their arrival to coincide with the orphanages’ fall break from school. They did this so that they could conduct a week-long vbs-style camp with the children. They had a great time packed full of Bible lessons, crafts, and games.

The other team that came simply spent more time visiting with the children. They helped conduct the Bible lessons Boguslava usually teaches, and just spent a lot of time getting to know the children. The visiting teens and the orphanage children became such fast friends that when it came time for the visitors to leave, it was a touching scene of tearful farewells on all sides. The only comfort at that time was that these dear guests promised that they would come to visit again in the future.


I thank God for these young hearts full of love for orphans and on fire for God, ready to visit and minister in the ‘unplowed fields’ of Kalininskoye. Winning the hearts of orphans is not an easy task, each of these children’s lives have been broken, and their hearts are often hard, scarred and untrusting. We’ve seen these young people from Volynsk demonstrate the power of Christ’s love, living the life of Christ in all their interaction with these children - that Life which comforts, helps, supports and encourages.


Thank you for your ministry.

Elena Vazhnichenko,
Methodologist & Curriculum Developer, Agape Ministries



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