Voronezh is where Peter the Great built his fleet for the Azov Sea campaign. It could have been one of most picturesque cities of Central Russia if it were not nearly leveled during the battles for the Southern approaches to Moscow during the World War II. As with most old Russian cities, it is struggling now to save and to restore what is left of its history and tradition.[Read more…]
I have done eight events in two cities over the seven days since I landed in Russia. Unfortunately, two additional presentations had to be canceled at the last minute due to such “unforeseen circumstances” as the lack of coordination skills on the facilitators’ part, and – I have to admit it – my own forgetfulness.
Praise the Lord for opening alternative teaching opportunities along the way, but… There are no excuses.[Read more…]
I am leaving Minnesota tomorrow in the afternoon and can’t wait to see my first audience in St. Petersburg! In fact, my first event — two hours after landing at LED — will be a radio show and I will not be able actually to see my audience. Later that same day, however, I am teaching my first class at St. Petersburg Christian University on the “Historic Foundations of Christian Faith” — with full visual contact with real 3D students!
Please pray for a restful redeye flight, with smooth connections and transfers all the way.
I am flying at 40,000 feet over the steps of Kalmykia back to Moscow on a Russian made Sukhoy Superjet and praising God for the blessed time of teaching and preaching for the first half of my journey.[Read more…]
Out of four days in Moscow, I spent two in Mozhaysk, where Russians gave a decisive battle to Napoleon in 1812. Located just over 100 km from Moscow, it is also know as a “prison capital of Moscow Region.” Back in the Soviet Union times a 101 kilometer perimeter around Moscow was drawn to resettle the criminal and political opposition element. My FaithSearch Discovery presentation at the Juvenal Detention Facility lasted about two hours but felt much, much longer, due to the emotional tension I had to overcome first. A little humor and some personal stories helped to melt the protective barrier of cold rejection and opened these kids’ hearts to the truth and love of Christ.
The first three days in Moscow, followed by five days in Siberia, were very intense! I cannot believe I am only one third of the way through my trip. Hopefully, my next four days back in Moscow will give me some rest – there I will have “only” one presentation per day and no more rides of 300 km on beaten-up, local Siberian roads.
I did my first FaithSearch Discovery event on the evening of my arrival in Moscow in the open audience setting of a very popular presentation hall in the center of the city. The room was packed beyond capacity and the Q&A session lasted almost as long as the presentation itself. The adrenalin rush from presenting straight off the airplane after 13 hours in the air helps to deal with the jet lag and tunes me up for the whole trip.
The following weekend was packed with presentations and travel outside of Moscow. As I learned a little later, it also kept me out of trouble in the city where riot police were catching random pedestrians during the protest demonstrations and marches on Saturday. I prefer traveling at will in Siberia.
And I did. Each day they took me to a different town or a youth camp to present for a variety of audiences: young and old; farmers and city intelligentsia; clergy and professionals. Those villages and small towns are rarely visited by speakers from outside the region, let alone somebody from a different continent. The reception was always very warm and people were very open to receiving the Gospel with Evidence, as well as sharing their questions and life worries.
The trouble is that in Siberia they don’t count distance in kilometers but in hundreds of kilometers, and their roads – outside of a few state highways – do not allow for any reading or sleeping. On most trips, I usually rest during travel – here I have to rest from it.