Calling to missionary service
Photoalbum "Ministry in L'viv"
Children's evangelism ministry
Sunday Worship Services
Vacation Bible School (VBS)
Evangelical camp for teenagers
Home Bible Study
Children sunday school, bible baptist church, L'viv
Christian Bookstore "Lighthouse" in L'viv
Higgins family photo album 1993-2007
Complete version of Higgins family photo album 1993-2007 here
Брошюра о восхищении Церкви "Миллионы исчезают" на украинском языке. Скачать её можно здесь
Higgins ministry in Kiev, Ukraine, 1993-2001
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Calling to missionary service
Upon our arrival in the capital city of Kyiv, we found ourselves literally overwhelmed with the response we saw to the gospel literature we were passing out and the preaching of the word. We were able to preach on the streets of Kyiv, through interpreters the Lord would provide as they were needed. With the help of a dear old saint by the name of Galina, we were also able to get into hospitals, veteran's facilities, orphanages, public schools, Ukrainian Baptist churches and even military installations, preaching in many different locations both in and outside the city. The more we laboured there, the more we saw the need and the Lord burdened our hearts to stay and work amongst the Ukrainian people. I must say at this point, that I believe I received my call to "go" to Ukraine several months before my departure from the States, but my burden came as I "saw the multitudes".
By October of 1992, we began taking Russian lessons, and had begun holding meetings out in the courtyard behind our apartment building every Wednesday night, and it was here that the Bible Baptist Church of Kyiv was born. The church now gathers in a different location, but several of the sisters who were saved in those first meetings are still attending the church in Kyiv, as is one of the boys who was saved in those first meetings. The work began to grow, as did our desire to find suitable helpmeets, as we both went to Ukraine as bachelors, having never been married before. The Lord provided our need, and by September of 1993, both Bro. Demopoulos and myself had married local girls. My wife, Tanya, was saved at the age of seventeen, having grown up in a Baptist church in Kiev, with both her parents having gone most of their lives to unregistered Baptist churches. When I met her, she was working with a Christian missionary association there, working as a traveling Sunday School instructor, helping churches to organize Sunday School programs all over the former Soviet Union. Since then, the Lord has given us two beautiful children, after taking our first boy, Philip, home to glory, and their names are Hannah - age five, and David, who'll be seventeen months old in a few days. Within one year of having begun Russian lessons, the preferred language of most Kyivites, I was able to begin teaching and preaching in Russian, with a little help from my notes, and some of the brethren who knew some English in the congregation. I finally found out what it was like to be able to speak in tongues, and what a blessing it was. I am now able to speak Russian fluently, and hope to soon be able to start studying Ukrainian more extensively, as it is the official government language, and is quickly becoming the primary language of Ukraine, or at least it's Western half.
The church in Kyiv is still small, with a membership of some where around sixty, but praise the Lord, over the course of approximately eight years, with the help of just a small group, the Lord has allowed us to put out close to two million tracts, establish a correspondence school with over 400 folks involved, begin a small Bible institute mostly for folks from our church who are interested, and opened up more doors than I could possibly tell of to preach the gospel. I am not a numbers man when it comes to, "how many got saved", but I do know that I've probably dealt with more souls, and led more individuals in a sinner's prayer the best way I knew how in the last eight years that I've been in Kyiv, than I might have, had I stayed and pastored or laboured in the United States. I believe the fields are still "white unto harvest" over there, and thus my burden is to "be a fisher of men" where the fish are still biting, and to baptize and "feed the sheep", until the "Chief Shepherd" appears, or He calls me home to glory.
At the present, my family and I are back here in the States for a short period of time, hoping to raise some more support, so as to be able to return back to Ukraine, and move to a city by the name of L’viv in the western part of Ukraine, near the Polish border. Bro. Demopoulos, intends on staying in Kyiv, until a man is ready to take over the work there, as a full-time pastor, but I feel the Lord leading me to move on and start a work out in L’viv. L’viv is a city of approximately one million people, which at present has no Independent Baptist works in it. I know of only one Independent Baptist missionary; there, and his intention, as I know him personally and have talked with him about this, is to start works out in the villages in the area surrounding the city. There are approximately 150,000 students in L’viv studying in various types of colleges and technical institutes, many of whom are from other areas of Ukraine, and the city's populace itself has not been "hit" much yet by the different Western "evangelical" groups working in Ukraine. I believe as Paul said, "To whom he was not spoken of, they shall see: and they that have not heard shall understand", and thus I believe the Lord would have me to move to L’viv, and try and establish a local independent Baptist church there, that the people of L’viv, who are largely Greek and Roman Catholic, or atheistic, might have a chance to hear the good news of salvation from sin through our Lord Jesus Christ. Coming from a Roman Catholic background, I am pretty familiar with the teachings of the churches there, but moving out there will mean needing to learn Ukrainian well enough to preach in it, so we'll need all the prayer we can get. My wife's first language is Ukrainian, so at least I'll have an in-house tutor, but I'll still have a lot of work ahead of me, in order to witness and preach in Ukrainian to the almost exclusively Ukrainian speaking population of L’viv.
For time's sake, I am enclosing a letter with our home church's doctrinal statement, with which I am wholeheartedly in agreement with. Upon that note, I will close, so as not to waste any more of your time, as this letter has already taken up much more space than I had expected it to. We would ask that you pray for us, and if you would like to know more about the work, or receive our bi-monthly prayer letter, please send a note to Bro. Jonathan Richmond at the address on our prayer card, and we'll be glad to add you to our list of prayer letter recipients. Brethren, pray for us! May the Lord bless you richly in your labours for Him.