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Ukraine Update: Ukrainians in Russia

By TWR Staff
CE Europe, Europe, Global, Russia, Ukraine, turmoil

UPDATE: MAY 12, 2022

Ukrainian refugees housed in close quarters in a sports center auditorium in Russia. [image courtesy of TWR ministry contacts] 

Did you know that there are refugees from Ukraine … in Russia?

Yes, it’s true that many Ukrainians have been brought to Russia against their will, but others have crossed the border by choice, reports Frank Stephenson, TWR Europe communications director.

In fact, as of May 10 more than 750,000 Ukrainians had taken refuge in Russia since the war began, according to the United Nations. That’s the third-highest number behind Poland (which has taken in by far the most) and Romania.

TWR’s contact in Russia says that our ministry friends there along with churches have responded to the needs of the refugees, a portion of whom are being temporarily housed in a sports arena. Poignant stories from this work illustrate the toll war inflicts. There’s the man who was looking at available clothing but, stressed by all that had happened, couldn’t remember his size. Another man picked out clothing for his wife who was in the hospital, not knowing that she already had died.

Back in Ukraine, we shared in our last update about how Alex Chmut and other team members from TWR Ukraine had taken time to help with the cleanup of Irpin Bible Seminary, which is near the capital city of Kyiv. It had been severely damaged in shelling.

Stephenson updated us to let us know that the school had taken in refugees, which is believed to be why it was targeted by missile attacks. The damage truly was extensive, with even the metal frames burned. But in the center of the building, the school’s library was untouched.

Moreover, the school’s 830 students and personnel are meeting online every night to pray together. James 5:16b tells us, “The prayer of a righteous person has great power.” Imagine the power of these nightly prayers!

In other developments:
  • Alex Chmut has been broadcasting counseling programs, especially for women who have been raped during the war. He tells them how God can bring them healing.
  • ERF Medien, TWR’s national partner in Germany, has launched a web portal for Ukrainian refugees in that country with references to online resources from TWR and other partners. The site is
  • Voice of Hope Ukraine Radio, the 24/7 livestream of music and Scripture, has received more than 19,500 web page views since TWR started promoting it on April 25.
Will you pray with us?
  • We praise God that the TWR Ukraine staff are able to continue their work, some of which is being done in the Kyiv studio. Programs are produced in advance, which is a blessing in uncertain times.
  • Please pray for the creator* of the Kaleidoscope program. She, her husband and young child had been living in Odessa, in southern Ukraine, after fleeing Kharkiv when the war began. But now with Odessa under increasing attacks, they are about to move again. Please pray for the Lord to give special comfort and peace to this family. Also, pray for wisdom for the TWR Ukraine team as they help this family in the search for a safer place.
  • We give thanks for the robust giving to our Ukraine-Russia Crisis Fund. Your support enables us to help our partners on the ground as well as to pay for relevant programming and the means to get it to those who need it the most.


* Name withheld for security reasons.
Images: (top banner) Ukrainian refugees housed in close quarters in a sports center auditorium in Russia [image courtesy of TWR ministry contacts], (middle, left) An elderly Ukrainian refugee in Russia searches clothes for his wife who was in the hospital. He later learned she had already died. [images courtesy of TWR ministry contacts], (bottom, right) TWR Ukraine team helps clear rubble from within Irpin Bible Seminary. [image courtesy of TWR Ukraine]

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