Ukraine: Day Three Report

Another day of visits to the schools of Frankivsk. We had so much fun telling the class about American culture. Karen and I attempted Ukrainian phrases much to the delight of the class. Ukrainian with a dose of Southern. Simba and I continued to teach every class the chorus to the song “500 miles.” Simba is determined to have every child know this. I don’t know why but I want him to reach his goal. We seem to stand out as Americans because, as we walk down the halls, the children live to come up to us and say “hello.” We answer back “Dobreday!” This means hello in Ukrainian. 

We had another great turnout at our VBS and adult class in Ivanno-Frankivsk. Karen’s class doubled in sized from last night to 12 kids. Scott Lockwood and Chris Mulkey had seven in the adult class and both were impressed with Valody, one of male interpreters, who finished the evening by answering questions from the crowd and using much scripture in the process. Our teen class stayed at around 12 kids but most of them were knew. I covered the story of Jonah (the kids pronounce it Yonah) and, with the help of Simba, Will Tucker and Caleb Colquitt, played a fun game with the kids where they were divided up into teams and answered questions from the story for points. 

The finals question, based on an analogy that Jesus saves us like Jonah helped save the people of Nineveh, was how is one saved? This stumped the kids who first answered, “by praying” or “go and tell the priest your sins.” We then read Acts 2:38 and finally one child said, “be baptized.” We felt like that was a great breakthrough. 

Tomorrow will be our final round of school visits and, in the evening, Simba will he talking to the kids about Naaman. 

We feel so blessed to be a part of this great work. If anyone ever wanted a true appreciation for all the blessings we have in America, come to a country like Ukraine. The people, while stoic on the outside, will melt your heart with genuine kindness and friendship. 

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