Article Display
Email  |  My Account  |  Donate

Greetings Friends,

I remember the first time I set foot in the former USSR. It was in September 1994 and the country was a real mess. There was hardly any food in the stores and at times when the old delivery trucks came to deliver bread, there were lines of people waiting to buy some.

Things have improved greatly since then. The conditions are much better and the people in the former Soviet Republics have most of the products available to them that the Europeans do. I see that the people are trying so hard to catch up with the rest of the world, but in so doing, they are forgetting about the hurting and hungry in their own countries.

God has not forgotten about the poor and needy and we are so thrilled that He has chosen us to be His hands and feet to help the orphans in Belarus and Russia.

The ministry time to the orphans in Belarus this trip was amazing. Working with Varya from With Love for Kids, we first made arrangement to bring a group of orphans to a cafe for lunch. This may seem normal to us but these kids have never been to a cafe before in their lives. They have no money and no one to take them.

I chose McDonald’s for our special luncheon and all of them had a "happy meal" which included a toy and then we topped it off with ice cream desserts!

Wonderful Kids
This group of orphans was not ordinary. Most of them were deaf! They have a special place in my heart since I have been a sign language interpreter for many years and have worked and ministered to many deaf kids.

We had a great time at the restaurant. The most important thing and the best way to minister to these kids is to just be there with them, get to know them, interact and build rapport and trust. This was interesting since Russian and American sign languages are different. So with the help of two other interpreters and a lot of body language, we had a great time just being ourselves, celebrating the joy of the Lord and allowing the presence of God to minister to the kids.

The kids ranged from age 8 to 16 in a group of about 15. There were two other older orphans helping with the group. They have been to the summer camps conducted by With Love for Kids, received Christ and are now helping in the warm house with the younger orphans.

There were a couple of boys (Misha and Vladimir) who were very high energy and disruptive at times. Vladimir is about 10 years old and he really stood out to me. His skin was a little darker than the other kids and he had a little different mannerism and character about him. I found out later that he is a little gypsy boy and he fit the role very well.

Photos: Jim Harper blesses a group of Russian orphans by bringing them to a McDonalds restaurant for lunch. It was the first time any of these kids experienced eating a meal at a cafe. They all enjoyed a "Happy Meal."

Touching Hearts
There was another orphan that stood out to me. Her name was Irene. She was 16 years old and the oldest in the group. As we sat there eating and laughing, I was asking the kids lots of questions so I could get to know them and remember their names.

Irene wasn't interacting the same as the other kids were. She didn't open up to me as easily as the others and I recognized that she was the unofficial leader of the group. I knew it was important for me to get her defenses down and allow me to speak to her heart. I asked Irene how she liked the food. She said she didn't like it and it smelled bad. My reply was, "Irene, you are a smart girl." From there, her heart began to soften and open up. It was a step that lead to the hearts of all the kids, making a way for them to know Jesus.

In my next update I will fill you in on what the Lord did with these kids. God is so good! Thank you, partners, for touching the lives of these fatherless children who can't relate in a natural sense to know a father or his love.

We love and appreciate you dearly and pray for God's direction, protection, health and blessings over your lives.

In His loving care,
Jim and Tanya and kids

James 1:27 ...visit and help and care for the orphans...

Copyright © Jim Harper Ministries
All rights reserved. Used by permission.

Author Biography

Jim Harper
Web site: Jim Harper Ministries
Jim ministers with an emphasis on teaching and facilitating unity among believers. For many years now his heart has been stirred to serve the Lord abroad with a calling to the Russian-speaking people wherever they may be. Jim has helped many in this people group to know Christ and grow in their relationship with Him. Jim has also worked in the Far East of Russia. There he assisted the Christian churches in the areas of growth and unity by giving counsel conducting seminars and leadership schools.

About Us

The online ministry of cfaith has been helping people discover faith, friends and freedom in the Word since 2000. Cfaith provides a unique and comprehensive collection of faith-building resources for the worldwide faith community.

At cfaith, you can strengthen your faith and deepen your understanding of the Word of God by digging into the vast collection of teaching articles, streaming audio and video messages, and daily devotionals. No other website offers such a unique and extensive collection of spiritual-growth resources aimed at helping you grow in your knowledge of the Word.




Support Us

Why support cfaith?

(All contributions are 100% tax deductible)


For every Internet search you make using
goodsearch, cfaith will receive one penny!

GS Logo 250x38

Contact Us

Business Hours:

Monday—Friday: 9 a.m.—5 p.m. CST
Saturday & Sunday: Closed


(763) 488-7800 or (800) 748-8107

Mailing Address:
9201 75th Avenue North
Brooklyn Park, MN 55428


Login Form

Please ignore the “Secret Key” field; it is not needed to log in to cfaith.

Login Change Article

You need to enable user registration from User Manager/Options in the backend of Joomla before this module will activate.