News, Press, & Events

Medical trauma kits

Hello dear friends!

Over the last 18 months, you have helped us to provide 600 emergency medical trauma kits and other needed supplies to civilians and our Defenders in Ukraine. We have received many messages telling how your kits have saved soldier’s lives. Thank you so much!

Well, we are at it again! We have set a goal of another 300 medical kits for our brave soldiers, and we need your help again. At the request of our medical chaplain friend, Lena (see video below), we have added some much needed items to the kits. Each kit will cost $100 plus transport costs, and I ask you to please consider donating $100, $200, or even $500 so we can bring these lifesaving supplies to help our heroic defenders. You can donate with the button below.

I know that not everyone can donate at this time but if you can, please do. If you cannot, please pray for us and Ukraine and our people. And please share this letter with everyone you know! It is my hope that many more people learn of what we are doing and join us in supporting Ukraine.

Glory to Jesus Christ, Glory to Ukraine!

  Tanya Kravchenko (Lewis)

I am back from Ukraine

Hello dear friends!

Well, that ended my trip to Ukraine. The last time I was in Odesa, my hometown, was 2 years ago, before the war. On the very first night, my city met me with an air siren and it was scary. But then I quickly got used to it, like everyone who lives in Odesa. Our air defense works amazingly and most Russian missiles do not reach their targets, but unfortunately sometimes they succeed.

3 weeks flew by quickly, because every day was filled with work, I was physically very tired and it seemed that tomorrow I would not be able to do anything, but a new day came and I and my team were ready again. All these 3 weeks there was a feeling – that all our efforts are never enough, and the feeling of guilt does not leave me even now.

I met with our dear military chaplains who had just returned to the front lines – we handed over humanitarian aid from our organization to them. They were certainly tired from a long and dangerous journey, but happy that the Lord uses them to help people who suffered from this terrible war and our fearless Ukrainian soldiers. These military chaplains are true soldiers of Christ, and it is an honor for me to work with them.

The Metanoia Ukraine team makes amazing projects in our Youth Development Center and provides psychological assistance to everyone who needs it. I was happy to see them work and finally join in person.

Meeting with our dear old friend – a military medic, a woman chaplain Elena. How glad I was to see her and hear stories of how our first aid kits save lives. Last year we collected and sent 600 first aid kits and 300 tourniquets to Ukraine. Thank you for believing in the Victory of Ukraine and helping Ukrainians stay alive in this terrible war.

 Many meetings, many emotions, many plans and I have already started planning my next trip to Ukraine. I will write to you about these plans later, but now I want to send you greetings from all my friends. They thank you for your help, your prayers, and the love you show in action.

May the Lord bless your families and reward you a hundredfold.
  Tanya Kravchenko (Lewis)

Updates from Odesa, Ukraine, Week #2

Hello again Friends,

One of my goals for this trip was to partner with a local Christian organization to provide and deliver humanitarian aid to people in villages (now liberated) that lost everything during the russian occupation.  This week my Team and I purchased hygiene items and other necessities, and our youth students helped us sort and pack them. When we told them our plans, many of the young people begged us to let them come.  Of course we could not, but their hearts and courage make us proud.

Friday morning we meet our friends from the organization and set off on a 3 hour drive east toward a village they knew that needed help.  My heart aches as we drive through city after city that have been destroyed by the godless enemy.  In between these cities, our fields, once beautiful with grain, sit empty except for signs warning of mines and bombs. It would be so easy to allow this devastation to harden our hearts beyond repair – please strengthen us Lord Jesus!  As we get closer to our destination, we are given helmets and bulletproof vests because we will be about 20 miles from the front lines of war (Kherson region). We are protected by God though and arrive without troubles. 

At the village we are met with smiles and tears of gratitude as residents eagerly wait in line to receive our gifts. They tell us that support has dwindled for them as the war rages on. They have lost everything but the land they stand on and they have nowhere to go. There are still children in these villages and when we meet them, we give them extra gifts of children’s Bibles and candies. The people tell us stories of the horrible things they have suffered but they also tell us that they pray for us and our soldiers and continue to ask God for strength to endure. The sound of not-too-distant explosions can be heard as we pray with and for them.

All of our supplies delivered, we say our goodbyes and again, put on our gear.  Our van seemed so full on the way there and we did have enough for everyone, but it never feels like enough.  The need is huge and ongoing, and we know this will not be our last trip.  As we head home, we were filled with a mix of emotions.  We thanked God for His hand of protection.  We wished we could give more.  We wonder when it will all end.

Dear Friends, please let me remind you of 2 things:  First, at this time all Ukrainians see each other as family.  We are united by our heritage, our honor, and our compassion.  Secondly, it is only because of your support and generosity that we are able to continue our ministry.  YOU provided for today’s needs.  YOU brought comfort to a hurting family.  And YOUR prayers give us the strength to continue serving the Lord and each other.
Thank you for what you do for my family!!

  Tanya Kravchenko (Lewis)

 Please watch our video about this trip and feel Ukraine and my people

Updates from Odesa, Ukraine

Hello from Odesa Dear Friends! Just a short update of my first week back in Ukraine.

Because we are in college classes about working with Military members and their families, our team held a training day for young adults at our Youth Development Center.  We asked why we do not approach or engage with soldiers that we see who have come back from the front lines.  Shyness, embarrassment, not knowing what to say; all of these were common answers among our group, and all of these are rooted in fear. I explained that courage is not the absence of fear but rather being bold – getting out of our comfort zones and doing something – even when we feel afraid.  We discussed how these defenders are true heroes of our country, and the team shared ways to approach and speak with them.  We prayed with and for our students as well as our defenders.

As we encouraged them, we presented a simple project:  We would stuff small gift bags with treats and kind messages, and the next day we would be giving these to soldiers at the train station with the message that “We see you and are grateful to you.”  Odesa is a major stop on the way west from the front lines so there would be no shortage of heroes.

Imagine my joy when so many students arrived the next day, even some who said they would not. Their nervousness was obvious but throughout the afternoon, they all approached battle weary soldiers and presented our small gifts and thanked these brave men and women. As the day went on, confidence grew and smiles abounded. Many hugs were given and received.

Back at our Center over pizza,  our young people shared stories of the day, fears, and thoughts.  They talked about learning valuable lessons about overcoming fear and gratitude.  We reminded them that they have a Heavenly Father who loves them and is a refuge when they feel afraid.

Our goal at Metanoia Ukraine is to change hearts and minds through Jesus Christ.  Today was the first step toward that change for some of these youth and young adults, and I believe for some of the soldiers too.  Please pray that God would continue to lead all of them to Himself as we hold out the life-giving message of hope that is found in Jesus.  Thank you, Friends, for your support and prayers.  You have made a difference in someone’s life today.

Tanya Kravchenko (Lewis)

Summer Trip to Ukraine

Hello Dear Friends,
On Tuesday, June 13th, I will be heading to Odesa, Ukraine to spend 3 weeks serving with my local team.  As the war continues, the emotional, mental, and spiritual needs of our community increase greatly, and I am deeply motivated to serve my people through psychological counseling and support. 

On this trip I will be bringing several cases of our Journey to Freedom books, in Ukrainian, thanks to our incredible partners at “Restore Small Groups”.  The author and my friend, Scott Reall, coordinated the translation and printing, and Restore generously donated hundreds of copies.  Thank you Scott! 
The “Journey to Freedom” group is a fundamental project of our organization, so for us these books are a treasure.
With what room I have left in my luggage, I will also bring thank you gifts and needed items for our soldiers.  I have so much more I wish to do while there and I will update you throughout my trip.

I will be flying to Bucharest Romania,  then traveling via several amazing angels through Moldova to Ukraine. Lord willing, I will arrive in Odesa on the evening of the 15th. Please pray for me and for our Ministry. 
Specifically, please pray for:
1.     Safe traveling in the skies and on the roads.
2.     My physical health to remain strong during this trip.
3.     Productive and successful work with my team.
4.     Wisdom in my words when interacting with individuals, groups, and organizations.
5.     Safety from enemy threats while in country.
Also, please pray for my wonderful husband, Michael, and my son Illia, who, although they are concerned for me, understand that I must serve my people in this way.  Thank you Friends, for your support and gifts.  Because of your ongoing generosity, we are able to continue to Change Hearts and Minds Through Jesus Christ in Ukraine.  You are a very important part of our ministry and I am grateful for your partnership.

Tanya Kravchenko (Lewis

Hello my Dear Friends

Although it has been some time since my last letter to you, please know that we have been working non-stop, serving the people of Ukraine in our Odesa area during this time of war. We continue to meet with our youth and young adults. We provide activities that develop character and build relationships with a Christian foundation. All of those who come to us have very deep psychological needs that require our understanding, compassion, and patience. We give them a safe place to express themselves and find hope for their futures.

As this war of aggression continues, there is a great need for psychological counseling specifically for military service members and their families. We have always wanted to provide this help but it requires a different kind of training than anyone on our team possessed. In early May of this year my team learned that this training was being offered at a college in Odesa, so I made the decision that we all would take this accredited course. Everyone on our team (myself included) is currently enrolled and attending the classes. They go to the college, and I attend online – twice each week for 4 hours each time. This is deep level, specific training for those suffering from PTSD, shock, and the effects of loss. With this training, in a few months we will be able to support our brave soldiers and their families with specific, appropriate care.

The cost of these classes is significant but because of your generous support, we are able to attend and add to our knowledge. Every day your contributions are making a difference in the lives of the Ukrainian people and now we will be reaching even more of them in this time of greatest need. Thank you for your love and support for Ukraine and for us.

Above all, please continue to pray. Pray for us as we delve into dark places to lift our citizens out. Pray for our people that they continue to hold onto hope. Pray for protection and a JUST end to this war.
Thank you, Dear Friends. We love you.
In and for and through Jesus!

Tanya Kravchenko (Lewis)

Thank You, Dear Partners

Dear partners, Metanoia Ukraine and everyone who made the dream of a powerful vehicle for our organization a reality, we are grateful to you!
We are now equipped with even greater opportunities to serve, be effective and mobile.
We pray for you, for your hearts full of faith and support!
With love to God and Ukraine!

PLEASE watch a short video.

Hello Dear friends

This is Mark Zhurzha, the participant of youth programs for Metanoia Ukraine.
I am infinitely grateful to you for sharing generously in the work we do every day. Your prayers and financial support work real miracles in the truest sense of the word!

Thanks to your support, Tetiana and Michael Lewis provided 600 first-aid kits for our military in Ukraine last year. Each of these first aid kits found its way to a soldier and now hangs on his belt waiting for use but hoping it will not be needed. 

One of these soldiers was my uncle Oleksii.
A year ago, he was a civilian but at the beginning of the full-scale war he decided that it was his duty to protect his family at any cost. He served in different parts of Ukraine for almost a year. Several times he found himself behind enemy lines with his comrades yet they remained alive. Every time after such an incident, he said “I am alive only thanks to your prayers.” A month ago, he was sent to Bakhmut where the worst fighting is. The russian enemy attacked from all sides, using banned weapons regardless of civilian casualties. For one whole month he defended this city.

On the night of February 20, his unit came under incredibly heavy fire and most of his unit was killed. Oleksi’s friend (on the left in the photo) did not make it.  Oleksi himself was severely injured, his right leg pierced, his arm badly damaged, and his left leg almost completely amputated by an explosion. Only thanks to the tourniquets in the first-aid kit, he was able to stop the bleeding and try to survive. For 7 hours he crawled despite continued shelling, to waiting medics in the rear, dragging his leg with him. Even when he got to the medic vehicle, the enemy fired on the van.

Now he is in the hospital in the city of Dnipro, the doctors are in shock and cannot understand how he survived. They were able to reattach his leg and there is hope that Oleksiy will walk on his own two feet. As soon as he was able to call his wife, the first thing he said was this: “Please urgently convey my thanks to those who gave this first aid kit. It was thanks to it that I remained alive. And thanks for your prayers!”

A year ago, Oleksiy and his family were not believers, now they pray and seek God.
On his behalf, on behalf of my entire family, I want to say THANK YOU!
Thank you for your support, prayers and financial assistance in collecting first aid kits. It was you who made it so that this hero could meet his son again!  The Lord is hearing and answering your prayers.
There is still much work to do, so I ask you to continue to pray for him and us, and tell your friends about this strong man named Oleksii.

I ask God to bless you and repay you 100 times more than you do for my family.

Be blessed my dear brothers and sisters. 

With Love in Him Mark and my Uncle Oleksii. participant 

My dear friends

For almost a year, civilian planes no longer fly over Ukraine, only russian missiles and military aircraft. Therefore, our journey HOME TO UKRAINE took 2 days. But can the way HOME be too difficult? Never!

In Budapest, Hungary, two military chaplains Vasil and Ed were waiting for us to take us across the border to Ukraine. We brought some humanitarian aid for the Ukrainian military, as well as blankets and warm clothes for the children.

Another 10 hours by car to Ukraine. Fatigue and incredible joy – I’M GOING HOME!! Very quickly my joy turned to pain when Vasil and Ed started talking about how they evacuated hundreds of people from Mariupol when the russians started bombing their city. Hundreds of stories of people who were left without a home, who lost their loved ones. They couldn’t stop talking and I continued to translate for Michael. They were so eager to share what they had experienced and needed someone to listen. Michael and I just listened and cried. So we drove all night and finally arrived in Lviv Ukraine.

A long-awaited meeting with the team. Mark, Ira, Galya, Tanya, Oleg!!! Familiar faces, dear friends, family!! So much to talk about, so much to do!

We cried, laughed, hugged each other, prayed for the victory of our Ukraine – we missed US so much, how great it is to be together. Metanoia Ukraine has so much work to do and of course we talked about that as well.
The opportunity to finally be in Ukraine, to speak and hear my native language, to be in church, to glorify the Lord in my native language – all this was healing for me. How I want to convey to you all my experiences and feelings from this trip, but right now, words cannot convey this. I know that Ukraine will win and then you will be able to travel with us to Ukraine. Then you will see how beautiful my country is, how strong, brave and kind the Ukrainians are. And you will also feel our Ukrainian hospitality and gratitude to you.

Gratitude for your help and for not leaving us in this terrible and unjust war. Be blessed friends and big greetings to you from Ukraine from the Metanoia Ukraine team.

PLEASE watch a short video about our trip

Happy New Year Dear Friends

Our hope and prayer for you this new year is for you to know more fully true peace with God and to overflow with the peace of God. May you be blessed in 2023 with a heart free from worry and anxiety, fear and doubt, depression and frustration. “…in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” (Philp 4:6b, 7)

For those of you who may have not heard, I am traveling to Ukraine (Lord willing) with my husband Michael, on January 12th. I will be meeting with my team there to bring encouragement, training, and Ministry updates and information, but most of all just to share in their struggles during this time of war. Like many Ukrainians outside of the country, I have longed to return to my Ukraine since the end of February, however, thoughtful prayer warriors have interceded for me, and the Lord has held me back until His timing was right. Now as He opens the door and we prepare to depart, we know the challenges and difficulties that we may face. But we understand the need to bring strength and encouragement, so we go knowing and trusting the One who holds the future in His hands.

We have been asking for donations of warm hats, socks, and gloves for children as well as thermal long underwear for soldiers, that we can take with us on our trip. Many of you have responded and we thank you so very much. We are transporting all of this with us when we fly but the airlines no longer are providing financial assistance for extra baggage. The cost to take one bag (we plan to have 10 (50 pounds each)) with us is $285 so we would be so grateful for any donation towards this. You can use the link below and designate your gifts with the note “humanitarian aid”.

Most of all Dear Friends and Partners: Please pray for us, our team, and the people of Ukraine. Pray that God fills us all with an extra supply of His peace, strength, and rest in our spirits. May you be blessed in a way that “Transcends all understanding!”

Tanya Kravchenko (Lewis)