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Meet Jack – A Refugee from Mariupol
Life with a newborn and new home
‘We were driving around mines and dead bodies… and had to delete the photos from our phone because if the soldiers caught us with those, they’d shoot us right there. I was told at the Russian post that I’d be shot if I had any photos on my phone.’
“I am from Ukraine, from a beautiful city by the sea Mariupol. When the war began, I moved from my district to another, as they were already starting to shoot at our city. We were shelled for a very long time, we hid in a small basement. On March 13, we decided to leave the city with prayers, then there were no green corridors. We didn’t know about it, because we were cut off from the whole world, there was no light, no water, no communication. We prayed for a very long time and trusted the Lord. And we decided to leave. At the exit from Mariupol, there were mines, grenades, the corpses of the military, we only left with God’s help from there. When we arrived to a safe place, we drove for two days. The pastor of the local church received us and sheltered us. Then, through believers, we learned about this place, and came here (Emaus Center) to wait for my wife and children who are now making passports. From the very beginning of the war, I understood a lot, I didn’t pray often in my life, I wasn’t often at home, I devoted little time to my family, this is all wrong. Wherever I was, a shell could fly at any moment, but God heard my prayers, covered me and my family in His palms, and protected me all this way from Mariupol to Suceava.”
We met ‘Jack’ and his brother and children at the Emaus Center. He came in calm, with a sad smile. We could tell he was a man of peace and kindness who was also feeling the effects of war, of moving from his home, of carrying his children and family into the unknown.
In February, Jack and his wife had a child. After taking their child home, just days later, a shell flew into the hospital.
“It was very hard to leave your home, as my wife and I lived. It has been there for a very long time and this road from home was the saddest. The wife and children sometimes still cry and miss the house very much. In the future, I would like not to see more war, to educate children, find work and further develop.”