Summit Missions International partners with local pastors and Christian leaders. We believe national Christians, equipped spiritually, and supported physically, are strategically positioned to effectively minister to the people in their country.
The Apostle Paul wrote to the church at Corinth saying that he became all things, to all people, that by all means, he might save some. Similarly, SMI uses multiple means – projects, programs, and ministry partnerships–to introduce people to God’s love and the hope that is found in Christ alone.
Adventure Camps were developed by our Mission Partner, Sergey Titarenko. He has a desire to see teens come to faith in Christ and grow in maturity. This camp combines physically challenging activities with spiritual development and discipleship for teens in Transnistria. These summer adventures include an entire week of river rafting, camping, cooking over an open fire, ropes courses, wall climbing, zip lines, hiking, biking, soccer and other sports. The program consists of team and character-building activities and community service projects that teach the importance of loving and serving others. Daily campfire sessions focus on spiritual teaching and discipleship. Teens are challenged to contemplate the cross, the need for a Savior and how to follow Christ in their daily lives. According to Sergey, “The joy of ministry is to see young people who do not know God join Him, change their character, learn to care for others, and become part of a team of disciples.” Summit Missions International provides funding, camping and sports equipment. view photos
Igor Velicanenco and his wife, Christina, moved to Transnistria in 2009. They began proclaiming the Gospel to university students through special programs, studies and evangelistic outreaches. Because of the growing number of young people interested in spiritual matters, there was a need for a place to continue meeting and growing. Igor has planted nine house churches throughout the city where students can gather weekly and study the Bible. These house churches are called “Church Without Walls”. The churches not only include students but married couples and families of all ages. Once a month these churches worship together. They regularly minister to their own communities through outreaches, events and programs for children and teens. Igor says that “As a church, we have a good influence on families. We organize seminars and projects that help us reach families with the Gospel.” Summit Missions International supports Igor’s ministry financially. Additionally, our short-term teams assist with community outreach events, children’s programs, and English clubs. view photos
Pavel “Pasha” Tian grew up playing soccer and was successful, later becoming a professional athlete. When he came to faith in Jesus at age 18, he decided to give up soccer. He grappled with how faith and sports could work together. At a seminar on “Christian Camps for Children”, he discovered how to use sports to share Christ with athletes, coaches, and students. He now represents Fellowship of Christian Athletes (FCA) as a chaplain in Ukraine. Pavel ministers in Kyiv through team huddles, one-on-one relationships and leading studies to help coaches and athletes in their faith journey. Serving as a chaplain to various sports groups, he uses his strong gift of evangelism. Pavel combines his love for Jesus and sports to reach the lost for Christ. Pavel says, “Many people live in fear and we need to share the Word of God with them. My passion is to speak the Gospel to people.” Summit Missions International has been a partner in Pavel’s ministry since 2015; supporting both financially and through collaborative ministry in Moldova, Transnistria, and Ukraine. view photos
Help the Children (HTC) is a Christian-based organization directed by our Mission Partner, Ana Dovgaliuc. She works in cooperation with the local government to provide social assistance and support services for orphans, vulnerable children, and families. Many children in Transnistria rely on state-run orphanages for school and meals because of their families’ financial circumstances. Through assessment, mentoring, intervention and practical assistance, HTC endeavors to keep the family unit intact and in the home. Ana says that “Help the Children believes that by caring for the physical needs of families and children at-risk, we help people find hope, happiness and see God in action. We educate teens in faith and share Christian values during our work with them, which transforms their lives.” The Help the Children Community Center and Mission Home provide safe places where vulnerable children and teens can receive hot meals, tutoring, mentoring, life skills training, and experience Christ’s love. HTC provides monthly stipends, clothing, shelter, and educational support. Summit Missions International has actively invested in the ministry of HTC since it was founded in 2006. Our short-term teams have assisted with humanitarian and educational products and distribution; construction and repair services on homes of families at risk, and educational and recreational opportunities for HTC children and teens. Summit Missions is committed to supporting this vital program through funding and supplies to ensure a hope and future for the children and young people of Transnistria. view photos
Generations Mission Association founded by Rustam Ibragimov and based in Kyiv, Ukraine has prepared over 35 mission teams in the Russian-speaking countries of Eastern Europe and Central Asia since its inception in 2015. The Generations team provides coaching to Christian leaders as they develop strategies and methods for creative approaches to practical and meaningful ministry. This is done so that solid leadership is developed within churches and groups of believers are discipled and mobilized to express the love of Christ to their surrounding communities. Fifty churches have been planted since 2015 through their guidance; some of which are in religiously hostile countries. In 2020, Generations Mission Association baptized 112 believers, trained 25 leaders in church planting, and planted 11 new churches. Summit Missions International is involved in the work of Generations Mission Association through funding, sponsorship of church planters, training of Christian leaders by providing speakers, support and equipment for conferences and workshops. view photos
As a retired schoolteacher, Lena Seletskaya brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to lead the Summer Bible Clubs. Bible Clubs are a week-long program hosted by local churches. These clubs are filled with games, songs, lessons, and crafts, all of which are centered on a general theme that exposes children to the good news of Jesus’ love. The Bible Clubs provide meals and snacks, which are important for the children. Many come from families that struggle to provide even the daily necessities. The goal is not only to share the message of Jesus’ love but also to respond to their physical needs. Following the summer program, church leaders are encouraged to maintain contact with the children and invite them and their families to Sunday programs. Lena works with a team of assistants that ensure the quality of the program. She says, “the main tasks of the ministry are to prepare the leaders by training programs. These include seminars in mentoring, sports instruction, and assistance in organizing and conducting classes for children and adolescents. Over the past years, there has been an increase in the number of churches participating in the Bible Club program. Leadership training assists in successful program delivery. I see how God is working in a special way in some churches to develop creative leaders.” Summit Missions International began the Bible Club ministry in 1994. This program has grown through the years to over 30 churches throughout Transnistria, Moldova and Ukraine hosting clubs for over 2500 children throughout the summer. We continue to provide full sponsorship of the Bible Club program which includes teacher training, materials, craft supplies, and all lunches and snacks. view photos
This ministry began when children would come to the church to ask the pastor for bread. His heart was burdened to open a feeding program for these hungry children in his community. Soon after, the “Children of the Street” program began in a small building on the church property. Children of the Street is a safe environment where the poorest children in the community can receive a hot meal, help with homework, and enjoy crafts, sports, games, and occasional field trips. Each child is given their own Bible which they read as part of the daily Bible lesson. According to one program worker, “this program is better than Sunday School because the children are here daily, not just once a week.” Summit Missions International is committed to supporting this program through funding and supplies to ensure children receive food to nourish their bodies; care and spiritual food that nurtures their hearts. view photos
In 2009 our national partner, Mark Fashevsky, opened thrift stores in Transnistria that provide stable employment to the community including the marginalized—single mothers, handicapped and orphans. Clothing, shoes and household goods are sold at a low price to an economically struggling community. Profits from the thrift stores support the work of Heart4Orphans, a Christian-based organization, which aims to provide care, support and guidance for neglected orphans and at-risk families to reduce the instances of abandonment. The first thrift store started as an experimental two-day pop-up shop at the Exhibition Center in the capital city, Tiraspol. The success of the pop-up shop led to the opening of the first store location on the outskirts of Tiraspol with a second store opening just three months later. There are now more than 37 stores, with a vision for future expansion. Summit Missions aided in the initial business plans and product procurement for the thrift stores and continues to assist with the processing and shipment of products. view photos