July 17, 2013
INTERVIEW with Helen from the KSOC
Every Sunday members of the KSOC participate in the worship service at St. Paul's. Helen Vinogradova is one of our altos, pictured in the center of the group in the blue-green blouse. Helen shares her faith and her life in this brief interview.
My family consists of my mother (87) who is a former opera singer and my son (30), orchestra percussionist. I am a musicologist. I graduated from Kiev State Conservatory. I teach at Kiev Music Institute.
Do you have any special interest such as hobbies, sports, what you like to do in your free time?
I love theater (opera, ballet, and drama). I like to read books and watch movies. Also, I enjoy skiing, bicycling and swimming. I love dogs.
What are your responsibilities in Music Mission Kiev?
I am a choir member. I participate in worship services.
How did you first come in contact with MMK? When?
In 1992, I read in a newspaper a short article on the performance of Handel's Messiah. I came to audition for the KSOC in 1993. So I have been with the KSOC since October 1993.
What do you think is important about this mission?
1. Spreading God's Word among residents of Kyiv
2. Assisting orphans from Kyiv's Orphanages
3. Helping the KSOC members to grasp the truths presented in the Bible
Has this mission helped you in your spiritual life? How?
The mission has helped me to understand the Bible and the Gospel message in particular. I have to think more often about the meaning of spiritual life, about my place in this life, and about my attitude to God, faith and to those people who surround me.
Have you become a believer (knowing you are going to Heaven because of God's Grace) through this mission?
Yes, the mission has helped me to gain a better understanding of this issue.
What influences did you receive by going on American tours?
While in America, I met with many believers, true Christians. My conversations with them have helped me to understand how one ought to live and believe in a genuine way. I still correspond with some of these people.
How is your life different today by serving in this mission?
I take part in worship services on the regular basis. I read the Bible and turn to God with my prayers. This is something I never did before.
In your opinion, how is MMK making a difference in Ukraine? In the world?
It makes our congregation members more spiritually alive and more knowledgeable. They gain a deeper understanding of the Bible. I think we need to have more people in our church. Then the knowledge they gain here would spread throughout Ukraine.
NEW MEMBERS CLASS
This week we have 16 people who are being interviewed to join St. Paul's Church. These interviews give us the chance to talk to them about personal faith and the Gospel. They are so enthusiastic. As Valentina said, "The church is great. I invited two of my friends, Lubov and Lida, to church who are also in our new members class. I will bring more people because I'm so excited about our church. I've been attending for one month. I want to share with other people because I never knew such a church existed. We sing, praise God, and study God's Word. We have access to God."
THREE WHITE ROSES
Three more of our widows went to Heaven this week. A white rose for each widow adorned the communion table this week. Vera Kuzmina, Vera Schipotina, and Svetlana Dombrovskaya were memorialized by those who knew them well. Roger, Kostya, and Diane went to visit Vera Kuzmina a week before she died, and celebrated communion with her. Said Vera, "My life has been painful and hard, but I have such happiness to see light through this window, and friends around me." Her leg was black with gangrene, and she was on strong medicine, but her smile was radiant when she talked about the Lord. "My favorite verse is 'If we confession our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive our sins, and cleanse us of all unrighteousness.' My favorite place is our church. Even though I am in bed, on Sundays, I feel myself flying to the church." The funeral for Vera was on the doorstep of her apartment building, which is common in Ukrainian culture. About a dozen of our church members were present with flowers. Roger preached the message and Kostya translated. They had visited Vera 12 years ago in her apartment and led her to the Lord. Since then, Vera had led dozens of people to the Savior.