3 min read

Surviving War, Serving Humanity: A Journey of Faith and Hope

Surviving War, Serving Humanity: A Journey of Faith and Hope

In this blog post, Rudy Balazhinets shares his deeply moving experiences of serving as a beacon of hope amidst the chaos of war-torn Ukraine. 

Rudy's Journey Through War and Service

From the initial call to evacuate to the relentless efforts to aid refugees, Rudy's unwavering faith in God and commitment to his fellow humans shine through.

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Join him as he recounts the challenges, sacrifices, and moments of profound connection that have defined the last two years of his life. From feeding thousands to providing shelter and solace to the displaced, Rudy's story is a testament to the resilience of the human spirit and the power of unwavering faith in the face of adversity.

A Personal Testament from Rudy

  My name is Balazhinets Rudolf Rudolfovich. I've lived through two years of war, but I never thought it would be so hard to describe these last two years of my life. One thing I know for sure is, "If not for God, I definitely would not be alive." From this phrase, we push off and move on...

It all started with a call at 4:30 in the morning. The message was: "You need to evacuate. The country will fall in three days." This moment was the most motivating of my life (sarcasm). I immediately felt in my spirit and still believe that Ukraine will win this war spiritually, mentally, and physically.

There was no panic, only a feeling that God was preparing us for the coming chaos, and we were waiting in anticipation of this moment. There were distinguishable moments, but there was no fatigue or time when we couldn't find or do something. In my mind, I am convinced that the devil unleashed his forces to destroy God's people, but God unleashed his enigma, which began to grow stronger by the hour, unbeatable day by day.

We fed refugees near the border at night, one of our biggest challenges. Millions of refugees, women, and children stood in line for days to flee Ukraine and the war. I remember my wife telling me, "Don't let the thoughts torment you. We're not going anywhere; we're with you till the end." After these words, I cried for several hours because I felt such powerful spiritual support.

The team built before the war had all the organizational impact—we ate together and didn't sleep for several nights in a row. On Sundays, we took shifts at the borders and continually prayed for our drivers. We knew there was a constant danger throughout Ukraine from Russian spies and small tactical groups, but sending out aid and bringing back refugees to safety was our divine call.

Accepting refugees in the middle of the night and providing them with accommodation was another challenging task for the team. Why? We had to explain to frightened people why we had to check their documents, register them, hand them over to the police, and inspect their belongings. Unfortunately, it was necessary because there were many cases when people brought explosives that blew up humanitarian warehouses and premises for refugees. We were determined to keep our premises safe.

We cooked at least 9,000 breakfasts, lunches, and dinners nonstop for six months. I can't even calculate how many portions of food, coffee, and tea we distributed throughout the night at these crossing points for refugees.

One night, on duty at our first warehouse, I met refugees from Mariupol. That's where I met Max, who was only eight years old. His eyes revealed all the pain he experienced during the evacuation from Mariupol. I remember Max whispered in my ear: Uncle, thank you. I thought my mom wouldn't make it because my little brother was blown up by a grenade given to him by a Russian soldier. Max stole my heart, and I've been praying for him for two years; I don't know where he is, but I hope he survives his loss!  

Family of Christ International serving Ukraine relief
Family of Christ International serving Ukraine relief

 

Will You Help Support Ukraine Relief?

As Rudy's recounting of his experiences draws to a close, it's evident that his journey is not just his own but a testament to the strength of community, compassion, and unwavering faith.

The challenges faced and the lives touched along the way speak volumes about the resilience of the human spirit and the power of collective action in times of crisis. But the work is far from over. As the conflict continues to unfold, there is an urgent need for ongoing support to sustain and expand the vital mission Rudy has undertaken.

Donate to Make a Difference

Your contribution can make a tangible difference in providing aid, shelter, and hope to those affected by the ravages of war. Join us in standing with Rudy and his team by donating now to support their mission and make a lasting impact on the lives of countless individuals in need.

Donate Now

Together, we can be a beacon of light in the darkness and bring comfort and relief to those who need it most. Learn more about Family of Christ International's relief causes by clicking below. 

Causes to Support Ukraine Relief | Family of Christ International

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