A Call to Prayer for Donetsk Christian Unicerzity

Donetsk Christian University

Dear  Friends and Colleagues in the Kingdom of God and in the field of theological  education,  greetings.  I  would like to share with you a word  from  Oleksii  Melnychuk,  the  president  of  Donetsk Christian University  (Ukraine),  which  was  occupied  by  the  armed  group of Pro-Russian separatists.

Since  Slavyansk,  Kramatorsk and other cities north of Donetsk have been  freed  from  pro-Russian  separatists,  Donetsk has become the stronghold of the separatists bands of armed soldiers in the region. A  group  of  approximately 2,000 armed soldiers entered the city of Donetsk  and  have occupied the dormitories of universities, schools and hotels.

On  July  9  a  group  of  armed  individuals  from  the separatists Pro-Russian   group,   named  “Oplot”,  came  to  Donetsk  Christian University  (hereafter known as DCU) and demanded that we vacate the university’s  student dormitory for their use. By the end of the day they  brought a written directive from the their leader stating that they  are  taking possession DCU building(s) for temporary use to be given back to DCU when the war ends.

We  have  been  advised that disagreement with their demands will be severely  punished.  Although  DCU  leadership  explained  that  the university  is a religious organization and that its property should not be used for war purposes the argument did not help.

Staff  members  and  all  students  have  evacuated.  The  Ukrainian government  issued  special  instructions  on how to avoid provoking terrorists  to  kill  or imprison people that our staff has tried to follow.

Oleksii Melnychuk, President / Board Chairman
Donetsk Christian University
Donetsk, Ukraine
Donetsk Christian University - faculty & students

The  separatists  promised to turn Donetsk into the second Stalingrad, what  they  so  far, unfortunately, have successfully doing. Thousands people  are  leaving Donetsk every day because of the war. All workers and  faculty members had to flee from the campus leaving most of their belongings  at Donetsk Christian University, which has one of the best Protestant   theological  libraries  in  the  former  Soviet  Union…

Currently  these  people of DCU, which are very dear to my heart, need very  much  your  prayerful  and, if possible, financial support until they  find  a new place for living and a new job. It may take a couple of  months… I spent eleven years at DCU: three years as a student of theology, and eight years in various capacities as a chief librarian,a professor and an academic dean.

Please pray for the peace in Ukraine and Jerusalem…

Wishing you all the best from the Lord,

Taras Dyatlik

Author: DanutM

Anglican theologian. Former Director for Faith and Development Middle East and Eastern Europe Region of World Vision International

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