Timothy Sloan, an elder in a church in Lutsk, whose Christian community is sheltering from Russian bombs, sends an urgent message


Ukrainian citizens residing in Portugal gathered at the Cristo-Rei Redemptorist Seminary, in Vila Nova de Gaia, for a collective prayer, on the day that Russia invaded and attacked Ukraine

Rita Franca/NurPhoto

This is quite possibly our last means of correspondence for some time.

War is imminent and the consequences dreadful. A state of emergency has been declared and this will be followed by martial law. Young Ukrainian men from 16 years of age are being called up to serve in the military and Ukrainians are being given the right to carry arms.

A major cyber attack is happening just now as we write, which has affected Ukrainian banks as well as government websites. Our local currency is in free fall.

My wife and I are not leaving – how can we? As an elder in the assembly my responsibility is to shepherd at all times. It would be a terrible testimony to get up and leave the Lutsk believers.

My wife and I are not leaving – how can we?


We have been preparing for this day. We have bought in generators, fuel, food etc. as we would like to turn the Gospel Hall into a place of shelter to accommodate and feed the assembly believers who will face many a hardship. God is about to give us a great opportunity to show our Christian faith practically and reach out into our community with the gospel.

But we may have to move out of our apartment as we are close to the military airfield. Six large bombs went off this morning in Lutsk just as I was going to the Gospel Hall at 6.50am. We are safe and will open the hall for all who need us.

People have started to panic, but God has not given us the spirit of fear but of power and of love and of a sound mind.

The military jets can be heard overhead and we covet your prayers! We are not any braver than you – but confident we are where God would expect us to be (Daniel 4:17).