Life has become interesting in Ukraine in the past week. Well, that’s not fair to say, life is ALWAYS interesting in Ukraine.
But as Americans were trading full Thanksgiving plates for crazed, Black Friday shopping, here in Kiev thousands were in the city center protesting.
In case you missed the news, or my many Facebook/Twitter posts, last week Ukraine’s President Yanukovych abruptly halted the progress towards Ukraine signing an EU agreement, which was supposed to happen this week in Vilnius, Lithuania. Instead, he has decided to strengthen ties with Russia.
EuroMaidan is the name given to the protest movement rallying to push for President Yanukovych to sign an EU deal. Until last night the protests were, overall, more peaceful than America’s Black Friday. However, overnight the situation escalated as riot police used force and violence to clear downtown of protesters.
From reports I have read it seems that those who fled Maidan have found a place of sanctuary in St. Michael’s monestary, but I’m sure this is far from over.
The question remaining is what will it become since tensions have risen, Ukraine’s President has refused to listen to the people, and clearly the government is not against using violence. I cried this morning when I read the news.
I know there violent things happening in other places in the world, but this is my home, these are my friends and family, and their future is important to me.
Believe it or not I have sat down to write a blog countless times in the past couple of months. There are several unfinished ones in my queue (that will probably never be finished because the moment has passed). So here’s the abridged version, which I would save for a newsletter but, despite best intentions, I don’t know when that will happen so at least you can have a glimpse of what’s going on 🙂
ICA Kiev held our Women’s Retreat in October where 60 of the ladies from our church came together for the weekend and worshipped and laughed and cried and came closer to God and to each other.
I moved to a new apartment, which happens to be on the corner of Freedom Street and Truth Street (which I’m convinced there is a sermon in) and towers 13 stories in the air, far above the tree line. My roommate is a science teacher at the local Christian school and we our slightly ghetto home has given us a lot of laughs and headaches.
After almost three months, lots of medicine, and even more prayer, I am finally not in constant pain. Praise God!!!!! I still have to be careful but I am so thankful to not feel pain every moment of the day and have new compassion for those with chronic pain.
One of my dear friends, Tanya, who I first met in 2009 on the World Race as a university student, is now doing a Discipleship Training School with YWAM and I’m so excited for her and proud of her.
My church here has been in this crazy season of searching for a place to call our own, and dealing with all the unexpected that comes with not having that. It has been a challenge. Yesterday we met for the first time in the Hotel that will be home for our weekend services, while we continue to search for a smaller center to rent for our ministries that meet throughout the week.
Unfortunately because of the costs associated with treating my health this year (infections, colds, TB tests, and herniated disc), it doesn’t look like I’ll be coming home for Christmas. I’m not opposed to Christmas miracles though so for now I still have some hope.