Russia (MNN) — Thousands of Russians filled the streets over the weekend protesting the assassination of opposition leader Boris Nemtsov, 55. He was an outspoken critic of President Vladimir Putin. He was killed near a highly visible location near the Kremlin, hidden meticulously behind a service vehicle. The shooting has ignited fear from many Russians who oppose Putin’s policies. Russian Christians are fearful.
According to reports, many of the 70,000 people who marched believe the government was responsible for the Nemtsov’s killing. State media is pointing their fingers at the west, suggesting spies are trying to destabilize Russia.
Project manager for Mission Eurasia Wade Kusack says there’s a new political atmosphere. “In this atmosphere of hatred and nationalism, anything can be done to people with a different point of view, and basically that’s what happened to Boris Nemtsov. He was assassinated.”
Kusack says this has been propagated by the government. “The propaganda machine is very strong in Russia.”
What about Christians? Kusack says Christians are a part of the propaganda. “Religious minorities, including evangelicals, are more and more isolated and blamed for hardships that Russia is going through. They’re named not only as sectarian, but also as a spies.”
Kusack tells Mission Network News that this isn’t a battle against people: it’s against spiritual forces or evil. What can combat it? Kusack says, “The only one thing is through the Gospel because the Gospel is the truth. This truth is opening eyes for the people, and people start thinking differently.”
Mission Eurasia has an indigenous training program to help equip young evangelical church leaders. It’s called School Without Walls. “School Without Walls is a tremendous opportunity to get the truth, to own the truth, and to change the heart of a nation.”
The program goes into a community and allows students to learn about the Bible and practice hands-on evangelism while still working, going to school, and caring for family responsibilities. Basing the ministry in local churches helps revitalize those churches while ensuring both teaching and evangelism practices are culturally appropriate.
$48 sends a student to school for a month of classes. Your ongoing gift not only helps train future Christian leaders, but it helps prepare the nation for heart-change. Click here to support the work of Mission Eurasia.