Each girl’s dream is to get married one day – to have a beautiful wedding dress and an unforgettable honeymoon.

For Olga K. from the front-line town of Mayorsk, only the first part of the dream came true. Her husband disappeared on the second day after their wedding leaving her pregnant with their son Maxim. He man went to Moscow and Olga has never seen him ever since.

When we came to visit Olga at her home, we brought her a food bag to support her in difficult times.

My son is 17 now but I am still single, – shares 37-year-old Olga –  There was a man in my life before and I thought that he would become a good example for my son. Sadly, my boyfriend Yuriy started drinking terribly. When he was drunk, he would beat me and I could live for months covered with bruises all over my body. I don’t know why I was putting up with it. May be it was because I was afraid to be alone…. Yuriy died of cirrhosis a year ago, and it was a very painful death. He was killed by vodka…”

Since the outbreak of hostilities in eastern Ukraine, missionary teams have been serving people in need in the town Mayorsk. Oleg and Marina Konoplyanka are a couple of missionaries working in frontline villages and having heard about this family’s situation they brought Olga and Maxim a food bag provided by CBN-Emmanuel.

They came to us right on time –  just when we ran out of all food, – Maxim continued his mother’s story. – I know that my Mom really needed a kind word, a word of comfort from another adult person. Missionary Marina has become her personal mentor. For the previous 37 years of her life my Mom believed that happiness in life could be only achieved through having a husband. Now that Marina talks to her, she has change a lot! She became more easy-going and fun to be around, she finally came out of her depression. In the end of September my mother was baptized and now that she has God in her life, she finds a real meaning in every single day of her life. I am very thankful to the missionaries for that! They came to our house 6 times brining us food bags. Each time they came, we were really encouraged with their kind words!”

Maxim and Olga’s house is located in a remote place close to a check-point. The closes place which could be called civilized is within 80 km from their depressed village. Thankfully, even under these difficult conditions 17-year old Maxim is hoping that their life can improve one day. This fall he entered a college in Slavyansk and now that he is a student, he hopes that this education will help him to have bigger achievements in his life. His dream is to earn money and to take his mother out of the slums and the hazards of constant shelling. He believes that his mother, like any other woman, deserves a life in a warm apartment and in silence. And while he is still studying, food bags provided by the missionaries have been a great support for the family. Maxim and Olga thanked CBN-Emmanuel team with tears in their eyes because it really saved them from starvation.

Maxim says that he is grateful to his mother for raising him to be a real man and a patriot of Ukraine, which is not a very easy thing in the atmosphere of their village. And we are thankful for this opportunity to improve the lives of people affected by war and give them hope that there is still good in this world.

Anna Chaban for CBN-Emmanuel