Update from Russia

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Dr. Terry Mortenson is currently in Russia. While I was at the "Will Rogers World Airport" in Oklahoma City (waiting for my delayed flight---I hope I get home tonight, as I’m flying through Atlanta and have a connection to the last flight tonight to Cincinnati—the joys of flying), I received this email from Dr. Terry Mortenson:


Yesterday (May 4th) noon I arrived in Moscow after spending four FULL days in Kazan, Tatarstan, which is east of Moscow 14 hours by night train. Tatarstan is a predominantly Muslim state in Russia. In Kazan I spoke six times in one church to between 10 and 80 people. Each lecture lasted 80--110 minutes with translation and was followed usually about 1 hour of Q&A, which most people stayed for. I was told that there were a number of non-Christians at the lectures.

The government cancelled the May national holidays just before I came, which significantly affected attendance at the meetings. But my hosting pastor and translator, Nik, had all my talks videotaped and assured me that they would be watched by many people after I leave Russia.

This church in Kazan is only one year old and is a daughter church of the church in Moscow where Pastor Nik is one of four pastors, and where I will be speaking many times this next week. Half of the believers in this Kazan church are former Muslims; some were quite devoted. Also, about half of the congregation has spent some time in prison.

There were some amazing testimonies of God’s saving grace. One Jewish-Christian man, Andrei, had been in prison for homicide and was the leader of the convicts until his conversion. Another man had been the leader over 3,500 gang members active in one half of the city of Kazan (2 million people). Another Christian in the church who came to most of my lectures had been a Muslim mullah and was in prison for some time for robbery. Today he radiates Christ.

My days were extremely long and full, with night train trips from and back to Moscow on both ends of the visit to Kazan. One afternoon for about three hours Nik and Andrei (mentioned above) took me on a tour of the city, which is located along the great Volga River, and we got to go inside the biggest mosque in Kazan. It was a magnificent building—very ornate. Otherwise my time was spent speaking or preparing to speak.

Some of the PowerPoint slides were not translated correctly so Nik and I had to do a lot of editing. And I had to shorten some of my talks and create some new slides to make the Russian translation more clear. Thank God for the marvels of computer technology. We could not have communicated as clearly without it.

Please continue to pray for me. Speaking through translation is hard work—both for me and the translators. Pray that the truth will go forth with clarity and convicting power and that many people will be strengthened in their faith or converted to Christ as a result.



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