Alexey G. (MCNet Russia) – As you are no doubt aware, Russia is a pretty big place (9 time zones wide). It is just not possible for us to reach all those needing and wanting training. This is why it is important that we have local ministry coaches that can use our materials to help leadership teams, throughout the year. This is becoming even more critical as it is increasingly difficult to get visas for Russia.
A recent trip to Moscow is an example of the role we play as ministry coaches. During the few days that Phil was going to be in Moscow, Alexey (one of our Russian ministry coaches that has previously translated and taught with our team), arranged to have several teams come to Moscow to coincide with the day that he was there.
One team came from Cheropovets (about 500 km north of Moscow), a city several members of the Canadian team has taught at over the last few years. The Pastor and some of his team left at midnight to take the ten hour trip by car (due to bad roads) to spend a few hours with Phil and Alexey in Moscow. He was also able to consult with several other groups that were in the Moscow area, including Alexey’s team at the Moscow Bible School.
In his own ministry at the Bible School, last year Alexey launched a mentoring program for the students. Using our mentoring manual as a resources, this was launched in September of 2013. Since then, twenty young leaders have been mentored by local leaders, who they trained as mentors. On this last trip in May, Phil was also able to participate in their final session. Next year about half of these students will be returning and become mentors for the incoming students. While these are fairly modest numbers, the impact in these individuals lives is hard to overestimate. As someone once said, “In the world you may only be one person, but for one person you may be the world.”