At North Davis Church of Christ in Arlington, a group of congregants, missionaries and community members gathered Saturday to pray for Ukraine amid a growing threat of a Russian invasion.
“I have so many people that I love there,” said Jenny Kelly.
Kelly and her husband Andrew helped lead Saturday’s prayer service, lifting up the children of the orphanage they oversee in Ukraine along with others they met during their time living there as missionaries.
The couple returned to the United States just six months ago.
“I lived there 24 years so for me, it’s friends, it’s family," said Kelly. "There are people that were in our wedding that are still there, and they’re trying to decide what to do and where to go."
Roxanne Lowe, a board member for Jeramiah’s Hope ministry, reflected on the children she’s met over several visits to the country.
“Teaching the Bible and teaching Bible lessons, it gave me a lot of opportunities to get to know the kids by name and to spend time with them," said Lowe. "And going back year after year, I was able to watch some of the kids grow up."
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Now, some of those children are parents trying to protect their own children from a potential invasion. One of the boys she got to know is now a Ukrainian soldier who soon could find himself in harm’s way.
“That makes me scared for them, said Lowe. It makes me very scared for them."
While those at Saturday’s vigil prayed for peace, they also asked for clear paths to provide help if needed.