Ukrainian prison ministry is helping Russian POWs

Wednesday, November 16, 2022 | Tag Cloud Tags: ,

ukraine worthy ministries

by Karen Faulkner, Worthy News Correspondent

(Worthy News) – A Ukrainian prison ministry has begun caring for Russian prisoners of war that were captured in the ongoing invasion of Ukraine by Russia’s President Vladimir Putin, Christianity Today (CT) reports.

Affiliated with the international network of the Chuck Colson–founded US prison ministry, Prison Fellowship Ukraine (PFU) was launched in 2002; it is currently led by Vyacheslav Kogut, CT reports. PFU normally tends to Ukrainian prisoners but, once the war began and jails began to fill up with Russian soldiers for whom there were few essential supplies, Kogut was asked if his ministry could help.

In an interview with Christianity Today, Kogut said his first response to the request for help was anger at the thought of assisting those who had brutally invaded his country. “‘We have Russian prisoners of war who need clothing,’ the prison warden told Kogut. ‘I’ll bring them skirts and dresses,’” Kogut shot back,” Christianity Today reported.

Nevertheless, while still “seething,” Kogut remembered Jesus’s words to His disciples: “If your enemy is hungry, feed him.” Remembering this teaching, Kogut went to the PFU storehouse and picked out the best donated clothing and goods and took them to the prison for the Russian POWs, CT said. Even the prison guards were reportedly impressed at the quality of aid being given.

“It is a way to show many people, besides these prisoners, that God is love,” Kogut said. “And when they go back to Russia, they can never again return with guns and hatred.”

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