There’s a new addition to our family… my niece Vita got married. Yes, under current circumstances, it will definitely be remembered for a lifetime.

God has blessed us with a large disciple family! Over the 30 years since we decided to follow Jesus, 13 of our relatives have joined this journey. Some of the stories can be found here. And two years ago, Vita, my niece started making friends with a young man from Ukraine. His name is Maxim. They met in a summer youth Christian camp, in the Carpathians. And since then, their incredible love story developed! Being creative people, their path towards each other was not easy. And how can it be simple, if even the wisest people on Earth cannot understand how the path of a man in love with a woman is paved.

Proverbs 30:18-19 reads “There are three things that are too amazing for me, four that I do not understand: the way of an eagle in the sky, the way of a snake on a rock, the way of a ship on the high seas, and the way of a man with a young woman.”

Despite the tense relations between Ukraine and Russia over the past few years, everything with their union ended well, although not smooth.

I remember how worried we all were about meeting Maxim when he came to Moscow for the first time. What to say, what not to say? But, the commandment in Philippians 2:2, “then make my joy complete by being like-minded, having the same love, being one in spirit and of one mind” was at work. That night I remember our conversation about our testimonies, about the ups and downs we went through along the way. God has given us not only a new friend, but also a brother! I think such marriages prove to all that we are citizens of the heavenly state. And that love is the main binding component of true disciples of Christ.

The most interesting thing started when we were all preparing to go to a wedding in Kiev. We bought tickets, wedding outfits, gifts, and then, an epidemic of coronavirus occurred. At first, we all thought there was still enough time before the wedding. But every week, our plans to travel to Kiev became more unrealistic. Just imagine how parents feel when they can’t go to the wedding and put on their festive clothes. And how the bride and groom feel when their wedding is canceled. Thank God, Max and Vita managed to file documents and register their marriage. Vita arrived in Kiev before all borders were closed.

We were able to watch a livestream of the wedding ceremony, gathered together by relatives in our apartment. And to be happy and excited for the young family, while sitting in front of our screens.

We are happy for our new family, and for the opportunity to witness this event with our own eyes. We are grateful for our brothers and sisters in Kiev and how helped in making this happen for Max and Vita! Thank God that even in times of difficulty, He took care of everything!

A special note from Alexei, Vita’s dad:

Well, here is the wedding of Maxim and Vita! Massive thanks to all the students in Kiev. I both cried and laughed when I watched the livestream. But I’m happy. Everything collapsed: quarantine, closed borders, the cancellations of the halls for the wedding, banquet, honeymoon, etc. Inability to bring my princess to the altar, it all broke my heart. But I knew that God would take care of everything, and He did.

I believe that we will all meet together in the summer, and I will hug you and say thank you for your service, care and generosity. Special thanks to my parents.