A Fire to Share Their Faith

Evangelism is central to Music Mission Kiev's ministry in Ukraine. One of the key components of that is Evangelism Explosion (EE), a ministry that trains people how to share their faith. EE's key principles include spiritual multiplication (disciples making disciples) and on-the-job training, where people learn evangelism in real life situations so they're equipped to do it themselves.

In this month's post, Lena, a translator for MMK, shares about the difference EE is making in the lives of the widows we serve.

In 1996, my first job as a translator was an Evangelism Explosion clinic, presented by American Christians who had come to Kyiv to train pastors. I spent several years traveling as a translator with American EE trainers and teachers around the country. Inspired by this work, I took all the required exams and was certified as a trainer. I was honored and blessed to be a translator at the 10-year anniversary of EE in the former Soviet Union countries that took place in St. Petersburg, Russia, in 2001. 

From translator to teacher

As I translated EE lectures delivered by MMK Cofounder Diane McMurrin, I gained valuable pedagogical skills and learned a healthy approach to teaching. So when I was asked to teach MMK's EE course, I was very excited (but a bit scared too)!

In the photo below, you'll see 13 of my 17 EE graduates. I am proud of them, but it is not about pride and praising people for their success. The thing is this: EE works and all "baby" believers should take this course! When I taught, I could see how God was working in these people's hearts. My goal was not to teach them how-to-do but rather how-to-be.

 

 
 Evangelism Explosion graduates, from the left: Larisa Degtyarenko, Valentina Pyatnichenko, Galina Kharchenko, Alexandra Tkachenko, Gennady Serikh, Alla Latish, Valentina Parhotko, Olga Artikova, Maria Vereschak, Ludmila Kanyukha, Katerina Utina, Alla Samoylenko, myself, Ludmila Nizhnik.

Evangelism Explosion graduates, from the left: Larisa Degtyarenko, Valentina Pyatnichenko, Galina Kharchenko, Alexandra Tkachenko, Gennady Serikh, Alla Latish, Valentina Parhotko, Olga Artikova, Maria Vereschak, Ludmila Kanyukha, Katerina Utina, Alla Samoylenko, myself, Ludmila Nizhnik.

 

All of my Snowflakes and Butterflies (my names for new Christians) became church members last year. They have that fire inside—that great desire to share their faith, the passion to learn more about God and their relationship with Him.  Because of that, I dared to put more into this course and presented each of the five major sections of the EE outline in greater depth. What a blessing it was to see how the Holy Spirit moved in the young hearts of these elderly people. And it was fun to see Gennady, the only gentleman, persevering in this "girls' club"—he was a hero!

For many, the most difficult part of the course was memorizing the necessary parts of the EE outline. Nevertheless, praise God, we have 17 EE graduates who passed both the written and oral exams. It was an encouragement to me to see how supportive they were of each other, especially as they tried to help a struggling classmate.

In their own words

A week after graduation, I interviewed some of my graduates by asking them the following questions:

  • How did you benefit from taking the EE course?
  • How did it affect your Christian life?
  • What was the most important thing you learned?

Here are their answers.

Olga Artikova

I got more assurance and amazement at the fact that we receive salvation not by our good works but by faith. Only by faith we can possess the Heavenly Kingdom.

Galina Kharchenko

I had taken this course earlier, but I wanted to learn more. And now I want to address those who have not taken EE: Come and go through the program! It equips you with more knowledge and strengthens a believer's faith.

Gennady Serikh

I have a deeper knowledge of the gospel. I learned about major differences between Orthodox and Protestant churches—and found more benefits in the Protestant one. Besides, it was a wonderful delivery of the material—all of the arguments were very well supported and I was impressed. I learned more about the life of Jesus Christ, about His suffering. I had never heard about it in such detail. I learned about the great help we receive from Jesus Christ when we address Him with sincerity and faith.

Larisa Degtyrenko

I enjoyed the way lectures were presented to us: methodically correct, following the biblical text. I loved the clarity of the presented material. The course gave me some light in my life and assurance. The foundation of life and the basis for life in society is faith in Jesus Christ. He loves people so much. He treats us like a father, maybe even with greater care than our own parents. 

Valentina Pyatnichenko

This course taught me how to approach people. Before I had tried to share my faith but did not succeed much. After taking EE, I realized what mistakes I had made then—I had no system. I was pulling passages from the Bible, and was "jumping" from one subject to another so people could not get a clear picture from my talking. Now it is so much easier for me to speak to people. I can keep them focused. I do not "jump" from subject to subject. I consider this course to be very relevant and useful. And it would be great if all believers could take it.

Will you join us in praying for these graduates?

  • Pray for God's protective covering over this group. Ask God to give them confidence and boldness in sharing the good news of Jesus Christ.
  • Pray that their vision and enthusiasm for sharing their faith remains strong.

Learn more:

Amy AndersonEVANGELISM