|June 2023 has become a month of joy and testing for us. On the one hand, we celebrated the 31st anniversary of the church and had an amazing service, where we praised God for the entire path we had traveled in victory.|
On the other hand, a day after the celebration, the city authorities demolished our church building, which they took from us back in 2021. For 1.5 years we gathered on the street, then we were expelled from the street, and now our temple has been destroyed.
Our dear friends! Peace and blessings to all. Together with you I want to give glory to God no matter what, because He is worthy!
Nevertheless, I want to give glory to God together with you, because the church is not a building, but people who have gained a living faith and follow Christ.
Of course, we need a building to get together. One Pentecostal church gives us this opportunity twice a month. For the rest, we have to content with online services, online prayers and home groups. The city authorities do not allow renting any halls in the city, and they work hard to create pressure.
Our church has come a long way. Its beginning was 31 years ago, in 1992, it was the time of the beginning of freedom, after the fall of the communist regime. Before that, we lived behind the Iron Curtain. The Bible was banned, and thousands of believers were in prison, just like my own father. Then freedom came.
In 1992, a small group of young people, about 10 of us, were desperately longing for God, coming to a hidden place by the river in the city downtown every morning, praying to know what God wanted to do. The atmosphere of the country was filled with changes, people were drawn to the truth. In a short time, God gave me several important revelations, that determined the direction of our start-up church.
One morning I distinctly heard the voice of God: go do My will is to save half a million people in this city through your church. Then through dreams God showed me huge stadiums that could not contain multitudes of people who wanted to hear the gospel. There were several other important supernatural signs. All this strengthened our faith and we began to preach the gospel in the streets of the city and the crowds began to repent. This is how our New Life Church was born. God has confirmed our ministry with signs and wonders. Saving people, healing the sick and casting out demons.
We have done a lot of good work during these years. We have been working all these years to bring the gospel to as many people as possible. They worked in personal and corporate evangelism, opened home groups, various ministries, Sunday schools, youth and teen ministries, held summer camps, opened new churches and trained new ministers and pastors. Without exaggeration, our church has touched more than one million people with the gospel.
Over the past three years, Satan has created many obstacles to prevent our good work, and we prayed more that the sown word would grow in our hearts. The destruction of the church building caused many different emotions among believers. It is obvious that the country’s authorities are behaving unfairly and treacherously. In addition, a new religious law is being prepared, a prototype of the law from the Soviet past. Pray for us brothers that God gives us strength to keep moving forward no matter what. I believe that Belarus is on the verge of a great awakening, about which the Lord prophetically revealed to many people.
This month I am also grateful to the Lord for my 53 years of age!
I am also celebrating 10 years since I had a stroke, how I was healed and restored by the power of God!
Pastor Slava Goncharenko
|Pastor Slava celebrating 53d birthday and a 10 year anniversary since having a stroke and having God fully restoring him. Praise God!|
|A short history reference: |
The church building was purchased by the church from the city authorities back in 2002. The building itself was an old cowbarn previously owned by a soviet collective farm. Over a period of a couple of years the church had received all the permissions to start the construction of a new sanctuary.
On the purchased landall the permissions received were revoked by one city authorities decision. Without any valid reason the church started gathering on the property in a tent due to not having any other options (the church was not allowed to purchase or rent any other city halls).
The church rebuilt the old cowbarn into a sanctuary and started gatherings. There we have had ongoing negotiations and court hearings with the government as they kept trying to take building away. On February 21, 2021 the police with bailiffs forcefully evicted the congregation from our rightfully owned building.
The building was looted and unused for 1.5 years prior to the demolishing on June 20th, 2023. Currently the church cannot obtain a permission to legally rent any halls in the city, the church was not compensated for the demolished building at all. The church was not given any alternative places to gather or purchase by the city authorities.
Our church building looked like vs. how it got looted once we were forcefully evicted back in February 2021.
|Our church blesses you.|
May God strengthen you and give you wisdom in everything you do.We will be happy to hear from you as well.