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Sasha Chekalenko takes notes during Sunday worship with the Sopot Church of Christ in Poland.
International
Photo by Audrey Jackson

A psalm of ‘our dwelling place’

After surviving the siege of Mariupol, Ukrainian Christian shares a Psalm with a congregation of fellow refugees and their Polish hosts.

SOPOT, Poland — During the 51 days church members were trapped in the meeting place of the Mariupol Church of Christ, Sasha Chekalenko stood in the auditorium and read Scripture, including Psalm 23 and Psalm 91 (“He is my refuge and my fortress, my God, in whom I trust”).


Related: ‘We would sing louder than the shelling’


Sasha Chekalenko reads Psalm 90.

Sasha Chekalenko reads Psalm 90.

Now a refugee in Poland, he stood at the podium of the Sopot Church of Christ to read Scripture during a recent Sunday worship. He chose Psalm 90, a prayer of Moses, who led God’s people out of captivity.

“As he stood to read … I looked out the windows at peaceful blue skies and the verdant green of budding chestnut trees,” said Molly Dawidow, a longtime missionary in Sopot — and now a coordinator for Ukrainian relief efforts. “I could only imagine what these words had meant to those hunched together … under almost relentless fire, not knowing if they would live or die in their beleaguered hideout, but knowing with confidence that whatever happened, they were in God’s hands.

Molly Dawidow

Molly Dawidow

“Read louder, brother Sasha! Read so that your brothers and sisters all over the world can hear of God’s marvelous works and his loving care for those who are his own.”

Lord, you have been our dwelling place throughout all generations. Before the mountains were born or you brought forth the whole world, from everlasting to everlasting you are God.Psalm 90:1-2

Sasha Chekalenko, right, and fellow Ukrainian refugees take communion alongside Polish and American Christians during Sunday worship with the Sopot Church of Christ in Poland.

Sasha Chekalenko, right, and fellow Ukrainian refugees take communion alongside Polish and American Christians during Sunday worship with the Sopot Church of Christ in Poland.

Filed under: Churches of Christ in Ukraine Conflict in Ukraine International Mariupol News Poland Russia Ukraine conflict Sasha Chekalenko Sopot Top Stories Ukraine Ukrainian refugees

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