A Christian radio broadcaster in Ukraine is calling on Christians in Ukraine and Russia to unite as tensions between the Ukrainian Orthodox Church and the Russian Orthodox Church materialize against the backdrop of a simmering conflict between the two countries.
The ongoing escalation between Ukraine and Russia intensified Monday, as Russian President Vladimir Putin recognized two breakaway regions in Ukraine that have sizable pro-Russian populations as independent states. In response to Putin’s recognition of Donetsk and Luhansk as independent states, President Joe Biden announced his intention “to begin to impose sanctions in response far beyond the steps we and our allies and partners had implemented in 2014” to ensure that Putin does not move further into Ukraine.
Biden further described Putin’s actions as “the beginning of a Russian invasion of Ukraine.” While leaders on the world stage have focused on the geopolitical implications of the Russia-Ukraine conflict, the tension also has spiritual implications for those living in the region.
In an interview with The Christian Post, Daniel Johnson, who runs an Evangelical broadcasting organization providing Christian radio throughout Russia at a time when the government has stifled broadcasts operated by Evangelical Christians, elaborated on the situation on the ground and its implications for people of faith living in Ukraine.
“Christians are … hoping that the Russians don’t come too far because churches will definitely be shut down in the areas that they take over because … that’s their practice and that’s their history,” Johnson, the founder of the New Life Radio satellite network who is based in Odessa, Ukraine, said.
Johnson maintained that what was happening on the ground in his city of Odessa conflicts with Putin’s insistence that Ukrainians want to become part of Russia.
Read more: https://www.christianpost.com/news/evangelical-decries-orthodox-rift-underlying-russia-ukraine-saga.html