Saturday, October 12
When Presbyterians do mission in partnership, our sense of call regularly leads us to difficult places in the world. Twenty-two years after the breakup of the Soviet Union, the government of Belarus remains the most authoritarian in Europe and the least reformed among the 10 nation-states that emerged from the European part of the U.S.S.R.
It is joyous to see a gift of ministry received and multiplied. From his home and family in Vitebsk, Vladimir Tatarnikov journeyed to St. Petersburg, Russia, to attend the theological seminary of the Evangelical Lutheran Church. Under the careful eye of a multinational faculty, including former PC(USA) mission co-worker Rev. Dr. Joseph Kang, Vladimir prepared for the ministry—three years of seminary and an internship. Making our connections even deeper, Vladimir then interned with the Moscow Protestant Chaplaincy, under the care of Rev. Bob Bronkema, a pastor and former PC(USA) mission co-worker.
Today, Pastor Vladimir nurtures two Lutheran congregations on Belarus’s western border with Poland. He stands as the first seminary-educated, ordained minister in the Lutheran churches of Belarus since before World War II. The challenges of renewing active church life in his home country are many, but he has answered the call and faces those challenges squarely each day.
Let us join in prayer for:
Orthodox Church of Belarus: Metropolitan Philaret, Metropolitan of Minsk and Slutsk Patriarchal Exarch of All Belarus • Union of Evangelical Christians-Baptists of Belarus: Rev. Viktor Krutko, president • Interchurch Mission Christian Social Service: Mikola Matrunchyk, director
PC(USA) Agencies’ Staff
Elder James Rissler, PILP
Robin Roach, BOP
Lisa Robbins, PMA
Let us pray
O Lord, your church spreads across the world to bring the good news to all who would receive it. Be this day with the people of Belarus. Be with church leaders and congregation members as they seek to do your will on good days and on difficult days. And may dividing walls crumble with your love. Amen.