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The group of teachers watched quietly as the video showed stories of people living with HIV/AIDS.
The video showed experiences of people being diagnosed with the disease, from Jamaica, South Africa and the United States. But the teachers connected most with the girl from their own country—Russia.
Katya Romanenko explained how she got HIV from drug use and almost killed herself. Then, in the video, Katya (below) told how she had become a Christian and been freed from her addictions. “I heard not just that God exists, but I saw His actions personally to me,” Katya explained.
The video was “Hope Positive,” released by CrossRoads, a ministry of Cru, and recently translated into Russian.
The group of approximately 40 teachers was being equipped as they led the CrossRoads curriculum with their students. A series of lessons on character, the curriculum uses Christ as a role model.
Yet they were surprised when a woman got up to speak after the video, and they recognized her. It was Katya, looking healthy and strong. She told about her life since the video, how she had gotten married and had a healthy baby girl. She also emphasized how Christ continued to guide her life.
Some of the teachers cried upon hearing Katya’s story, and others hugged her at the end.
One woman remembers and quotes from letters home to describe her yearlong stay in Russia where she and a team of recent college graduates helped launch a new campus ministry.
Darin and Susan McFarland knew early on that they wanted to serve the Lord in Russia. What their journey would be like, however, surprised them both.
A staff couple returns to Russia with Cru to see God at work in the hearts of the people in Ekaterinburg.
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