A Christian missionary organization is calling on believers in America to help Russian families celebrate Christmas this year.
The Slavic Gospel Association spreads the gospel in ten countries of the former Soviet Union. Ministry President Michael Johnson explains that in Russia itself, his organization partners with churches that celebrate Christmas on December 25th and on January 7th. They invite people, including unbelievers, to church.
"We developed a program called Immanuel's Child … last year," Johnson shares. "We distributed gifts and Bibles to roughly 37,000 children. Our goal is to distribute 50,000 this year, and the churches tell us that it's one of the greatest evangelistic opportunities that they have throughout the year."
Many who have participated, including whole families, have become Christians as a result.
This year, the pandemic has wracked the nation's economy.
"This'll be a special blessing to these families, many of whom their parents have lost their jobs, and there's a lot of uncertainty there now," Johnson relays. "There's not a tremendous amount of hope. People can't support their families, so I think that this is really going to be a special time and a special blessing for those families and for those children in those communities during this very difficult time."
The Immanuel’s Child program invites Americans to contribute and also reminds them to pray continually for the Russian children.