Ekaterina Petrenko
(Hallelujah Church, Skadovsk)

My name is Ekaterina. I am 59 years old. I am a Christian and student of the Vision University.

I am a member of the Hallelujah Church in Skadovsk.

When I received Jesus Christ as my Lord and Savior, I was already over 50. Thank God for my spiritual birth!

Before I began to study at the Vision University, I have read the Bible cover to cover twice. I used to read from the Psalms and the New Testament every day, except from the book of Revelation. I memorized a few verses from the Bible. Thus I could keep the conversation on «spiritual» topics and had «a form of godliness».

I wasn’t too excited about the offer to study. The reasons were many: I was too old for a student, I lived about 30 miles away from Skadovsk and there were no regular public transportation. Even if would come, I would need a place to stay overnight etc. However, I really wanted to not just read the Bible, but also to understand what I read.

I was naturally disappointed when our first lesson began not with the book of Genesis but with the familiar terms, namely repentance, faith, justification. But the second course of the first year was called «Christian Character». I realized that God wanted to change my inner person. I accepted the studying as God's will for me at this time and said «Yes» to Him.

Today, I am in my fourth year. Looking back at the studies, I would have named it just as Dr. Stan DeKoven called his book «Journey to Integrity». This journey was very exciting.

I am grateful to God for every teacher He sent to us. They strengthened our faith by their faith, they passed on to us their excitement and their love for God, and our faith and love grew as they imparted their knowledge to us. And God kept working on the inner man.

I am grateful to God for every employee of the University. Everyone wants to see the result of their work. The university workers surely contributed to the fact that the word of God, the love and care for each other were kept in our church.

I am grateful to God for our pastors Vladimir and Alla Kukharchuk who strongly support the students and see the potential even in grandmothers like me.

I am grateful to God for our group administrator Natalia for her care, comfort and support.

I am grateful to God for my fellow students, for their testimonies, through which my trust in God grew.

I am grateful to God for sister Ludmilla who opened her home for me for all these years. She opened not only her home to me but her heart as well.

I am grateful to God for my son Artyom as he supported my desire to learn by driving me to sessions and back home.

The topic of the church made the biggest impression on me. It was a revelation for me that God is now busy building up the Church. And the fact that God's appointed time will come, and all of creation will perish, only God and His Church remaining.

All these relationships with the people above for whom I give thanks to God formed an understanding of the church in me. I believe and ask God that He would help me to be useful in the Body of Christ.

Another thank you, Lord, for the authors of books which were used as educational material. O Lord, be merciful to all who love you and bless us.

Lord, I pray: give Your co-workers «good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over...». Amen!