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RCM in Russia - History

The work of Reformation Christian Ministries began in Russia through the auspices of one of its former board members. Long before the downfall of communism, he had contact with various Russian dissidents and aided them in many ways. After the fall of the Iron Curtain, he was invited to Russia a number of times since many of his former friends were now influential with the new government.

While these opportunities were exciting and led to significant inroads within the Russian intelligentsia, most of the people were quite committed to the Russian Orthodox Church. Evangelicals, on the other hand, have predominantly developed into the lower class people because of decades of discrimination against them by the former communist government, thus they have not always been well educated. The dilemma was how to bring the Reformation to Russia. We do not want to compromise with the Orthodox Church or succumb to the evangelicals' emphasis on "reportable decisions for Christ" and its incipient Arminianism.

In 1993, an opportunity opened for RCM to meet a visiting Russian pastor, Eugene Kashirsky, who was temporarily living in Washington, D.C. He was invited to visit with us in Florida for a number of days. He represented the Union of Evangelical Reformed Churches (a small denomination with churches then only in Tver and Moscow, though larger now). Plans were laid for various levels of cooperation as the Lord would open opportunities.

The first major door opened in 1994 when they sought to give their other pastor in Moscow some additional training. It was arranged for Vladimir Lotsmanov to spend eight months with us in the RCM office. He was trained on the computer by Rev. Donnan, and took some seminary courses. Out of this developed a close relationship between RCM and the leadership of the Reformation Society (a ministry of the Union of Evangelical Reformed Churches) as well as the Calvin Study Center (a ministry of the Tver Evangelical Reformed Church). Their objective is the Reformation of Russia.

In 1998 Rev. Donnan was asked to serve on the board of the seminary of St. Petersburg. Rev. Blake Purcell serves as the director of that work. RCM has, in the past, provided equipment, but now confines itself to counsel and is not engaged in funding this endeavor.

During 2003, Rev. & Mrs. Donnan and several others visited Moscow, Tver and St. Petersburg. Future trips are planned.

 
 
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