Almost ten days in one city! Not just any city – in Saint-Petersburg! It does not happen very often on my trips that I am able to book myself for such a long time in the same area. I was truly blessed with the most beautiful weather – not a drop of rain! The Dostoevsky-style of gloomy, wet, and windy Saint-Petersburg-in-the-fall weather has not arrived yet and I have been enjoying my long walks to my event locations instead of hiding away on the subway or in cabs.[Read more…]
Can one travel in Russia for three weeks without ever crossing a single time zone line? While planning my next teaching trip I attempted to do exactly that: by traveling along the meridians from North to South and back. I actually tried to concentrate on the two most populated areas – around Moscow and St. Petersburg – with only one quick trip down the Volga River to Nizhniy Novgorod and Samara. Yes, technically I will peak into the next time zone for a couple of days before flying back to Severnaya Stolitsa a.k.a. St. Petersburg.[Read more…]
“We will all remember this year’s summer camp! Not just for the fun and fellowship but, most importantly, for the two days of ‘discoveries’ that impacted everybody here so much. Evidence based faith in God is so cool!” This was shared with me the small group leader in the Evangelical Christian Camp near Novokuznetsk.
Frankly, I was a little concerned that the historic and manuscript evidence material would be difficult for the younger part of the 150-strong youth audience gathered under the white-and-blue striped tent. The audience ranged in age from 11 to 20 years. I had to constantly scan and monitor their attention level to make sure they are neither bored nor overwhelmed. It seemed to have worked perfectly well and the Q&A session demonstrated that both ends of the spectrum stayed interested and engaged.[Read more…]
As is usually the case for my summer trips, on this one I will cover a lot of ground across the vast territory of Russia. Due to the most severe sanitary restrictions in Moscow now, I will only be changing planes and trains there. As the schools and universities are out for summer break, I will devote my time to the audiences and venues often neglected during the busy academic year: churches, family camps, libraries, and museums; also prisons and military bases, etc. Those events are extremely hard to put into a nice sequence with a reasonable travel distance between them, and my route map reflects that. On some of the days I will be presenting at two or three different settings. Some other days will all be spent in the air, or on trains and buses. Most of my events on this trip will not be trainings of teachers and church leaders but outreach events to audiences from very different backgrounds and walks of life. I cannot thank my ministry partners in Siberia and in Central Russia enough for allowing me to present at their camps, conferences, and mission events.
Flying from the middle of Siberia back to Moscow, I was moving with the sun and arrived at Domodedovo Airport the same early morning time at which I took off from Novokuznetsk. That gave me just enough time for a quick shower at my friends’ apartment and off I went to the XXIX Educational Conference held in the huge auditorium right under the largest cathedral in the whole city – if not in the whole country – Cathedral of Christ the Savior. Which, of course, was almost empty this year because of quarantine restrictions. The presentations were broadcast to many hundreds of church communities and thousands of viewers all over Russia.[Read more…]