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'This Is a Spiritual Moment': Polish Pastor Opens Church to Ukrainian Refugees Seeking Safe Haven Amid Russian Invasion

Randy Mancini 2 Mar 6

The moment he heard about Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, Polish Pastor Henryk Skrzypkowski and his church began purchasing beds, blankets, and other supplies for the impending influx of refugees.

“It was a step by faith,” the pastor told Faithwire, sitting alongside Dr. Paul Chitwood, president of the Southern Baptist Convention’s International Mission Board. Now, he said, Chelm Baptist Church is, on any given day, housing more than 200 refugees who have crossed the Ukrainian border into Poland.

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Skrzypkowski’s church — along with many other congregations in the region — is serving as a receiving line for those fleeing the unfolding war in Ukraine, most of whom are women and children, as men have been told to stay behind to fight Russian forces. On Tuesday alone, the church helped a handful of families relocate to Gdańsk, Poland, Germany, and Belgium.

Chitwood, who arrived in Poland Monday, praised the local church for its efforts.

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