In 2019, a Charlotte area church, with the help of a financial advisor friend, set up a Giving Fund (donor-advised fund) to support a sister church in Irpin, Ukraine. Though separated by thousands of miles, the churches had been connecting for years through sports outreaches and vacation Bible schools. Now, the relationship is helping Irpin Bible Church to stand, as they refuse to abandon their church, their country, or their people.
After the fund was established, it was used to support a building expansion plan in Ukraine. This has proven to be providential. In 2022, on the day Russia invaded their country, two pastors from the Irpin church happened to be in the U.S. attending an international conference and visiting their sister church. The pastors immediately returned home to support those in their own church who had already begun providing shelter, food, and generators at the church building, where many were seeking refuge. Soon, a second church near Charlotte and many others joined in supporting them.
Since the first days of the invasion, Irpin Bible Church has provided for more than 7,000 people, many of whom did not know the Lord but, nonetheless, were so well cared for that they promised to return to the church when they were able to re-enter the country.
Read the Gospel Coalition story about why these church leaders made a commitment to stay in Ukraine – despite the fact that they knew what was coming was terrible. They vowed to stay, to serve, and to be light in the darkness. Even some who planned to leave changed their minds.
Read their story here, and connect with the NCF Carolinas team if you want more information about supporting this church.