Bible lessons in orphanages

      Ministry as Usual

Even though we are deeply concerned about the events currently taking place in our country, we are continuing in our ministry to the orphans of Ukraine. It would be a tragedy if Christians abandoned their care for those whom government and society have largely forgotten during this time of unrest.

Here at Agape Ministries Ukraine, we are continuing with our weekly lessons at the orphanages as usual. Our staff teachers and volunteers both are constantly sharing of Christ and salvation through faith in Him with these children. We know that even if the children give every indication of being completely unconcerned about what they hear, the Word of God is "alive and active, Sharper than any double-edged sword, penetrating even to the dividing of soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart." (Heb.4:12)

Over the course of the past month, Agape's curriculum developers visited six different orphanages and were able to observe the Bible lessons being taught there by Agape teachers and volunteers. Everywhere they went, they were warmly greeted by the children and orphanage staff alike.

It was interesting to note that the younger children at the orphanages were excited about and sincerely interested in the Word of God. The middle elementary and junior high age groups were at least attentive, if not quite as enthusiastic as the younger children. However, quite often, as we visited their lessons, we saw a quietly suppressed interest, respect and attentiveness masked behind an outer facade of 'coolness' and apathy.

Most importantly, it was greatly encouraging for us to see that all of the children, regardless of age appeared to relate to God as a living reality in their lives. As a result, we can hope that as they grow up, they won't have any hang ups about turning to God in time of need. They aren't afraid of Christians (as many are), since they've spent so much time with Christian friends that visit their orphanage. They simply haven't seen anyone act like the weirdo fanatics that believers are often reported to be by the enemies of the church. They've seen regular people who love God, whose words and actions aren't contradictory, whose first priority is to live by the words: "Love Your Neighbor as Yourself."

During the Bible lessons, Agape teachers do their best to instill in these children's lives what they need most: peace and kindness, patience and obedience; the ability to trust others, to be a friend and to make friends and much, much more.

When the director of one of the orphanages asked the children, "Are these lessons something that actually help you?" - many of the children responded with an enthusiastic "Yes!"
Praise the Lord!

Natasha Zatirka,
Curriculum developer, Agape Ministries