East-West Church & Ministry Report
Vol. 6, No. 2, Spring 1998, Covering the Former Soviet Union and East Central Europe


The Association for Spiritual Renewal (ASR) offers over 488 Christian books, CDs, and CD-ROMs in Russian, addressing evangelism, discipleship, family relations, children's literature, Christian education materials, and business ethics. Authors include Oswald Chambers, Gary Chapman, Josh McDowell, J.I. Packer, T. Austin Sparks, C. H. Spurgeon, Charles Stanley, John Stott,  and A. W. Tozer. ASR offers discounts for orders over $500 and additional educational discounts for qualifying educational institutions.  For more information, or to place an order, please consult the ASR web page, http://www.asr.ru, or contact Nadya Pomazkova, ASR, 29-30 kv. Novye Cheryemushki, ul. Nametkina, korpus. 5, Moscow 117420, Russia; tel: 095-719-7945; fax: 095-719-7890; e-mail:  nadp@asr.ru.

St. Petersburg Times reporter John Varoli, cofounder of Off the Streets, a charity for homeless children, has written a troubling, yet insightful, report on "Homelessness in Russia," in the Jamestown Foundation biweekly, Prism 3 (no. 20, 5 December 1997). This study, as well as other articles and information, is available free of charge on the Internet (http://www.jamestown.org/publications/archive/prism/97/December/varolfin.htm) or by contacting The Jamestown Foundation, 1528 18th Street NW, Washington, DC 20036; tel:  202-483-8888; fax:  202-483-8337; e-mail:  long@mx.jamestown.org.

A 28-page United Bible Societies Special Report (no. 17, April 1998) highlights recent developments in Russia.

For a free copy of the Special Report contact:  UBS World Service Center, Reading Bridge House, Reading, England RG1 8PJ; tel:  44-0118-950-0200; fax:  44-0118-950-0857.  For an e-mail copy send a request via Biblenws@ubs-wsc with the word menu or index in the subject line.

Petrenko, Vitalij Ivanovich.  "Theology of Icons:  A Protestant Perspective."  Master of Theology thesis.  Brunel University, supervised by London Bible College, 1997.  105 pp.

This thesis, available on the Internet at http:www.bethel.edu/seminary_academics/international/russian/icon.html, sees both value and danger in the use of icons in worship.  Positively, Petrenko argues, "The icon represents sacred art which testifies to historical truth and God's revelation in Jesus Christ.  It . . . represents a valuable, visible aid to the Gospel proclaimed by Word . . . .  The value of the icon ought to be reconsidered by those churches outside [the] Orthodox tradition which were affected by the theology of [the] Reformation or by their own prejudice and suspicion."  Negatively, "Any suggestion of the icon having the real presence or being used as a channel of grace leads inevitably to the danger of idolatry and superstition."  The author questions whether Orthodox theological and philosophical justification for icons "correspond to Church praxis in the life of Orthodox believers" (pp. 74 and 71).

Texas-based Russian Resources has compiled a directory of 99 Western and indigenous organizations and individuals involved in Russian-language Christian literature production or distribution.  Entries range from ministries which publish single booklets to the Association for Spiritual Renewal/Peter Deyneka Russian Ministries which distributes over 450 titles by various publishers.  Each entry includes address, phone, fax, and when available, e-mail, web site, and description of available literature.  Organizations with especially extensive entries and lists of titles include the Association of Christian Schools International (2 pp.), the Association for Spiritual Renewal (12 pp.), Ichthus Books (3 pp.), MIRT (1 p.) and Multi-Language Media (1 p.).  While not claiming comprehensive coverage, this list provides valuable contact information for large and many lesser-known groups involved in the production or distribution of Russian-language Christian materials.  To obtain a copy, contact Russian Resources, Box 3114, McAllen, TX 78502; fax:  210-682-6087; e-mail:  kennethwes@aol.com.

Extensive survey work with high school students forms the foundation for Young People in Postmodern Society--A Central European Perspective by Dušan Jaura, Slovak theologian, high school teacher, and lecturer.  This 47-page study seeks to help teachers, pastors, parents, and youth workers to better understand the coming generation of church members and citizens.  Cost is $15/£10 for print version and $7/£5 for e-mail version, plus $2/£1.50 for postage and handling per print copy.  Contact:  SEN, LiptovskŠ 10, 821 09 Bratislava, Slovakia; tel:  421-7-521-6293; fax:  421-7-521-6288; e-mail:  juraj@citygate.org; or Central European Papers, Attn:  Lesa Hudson, Box 202010, Florence, SC 29502-2010; tel:  888-819-3109; e-mail:  lesa@acshone.com; or CEMF/SEN, 3 Springfield Rd., Hinckley, Leics LE10 1AN, England; tel:  44-1455-617074; fax:  44-1455-250534; e-mail: 100276.317@compuserve.com.

Ellis, Geoff and Wesley Jones.  The Other Revolution; Russian Evangelical Awakenings.  Abilene, TX:  Abilene Christian University Press, 1996.  230 pp.  $16.95.

In this volume two Church of Christ authors survey the history of Russian Evangelicals, especially 1874-1928, seeking signs of affinity with the Restorationist movement, which emphasizes Christian unity and a return to unadorned New Testament faith.  Nineteenth-century St. Petersburg Evangelicalism, resulting from the ministry of England's Lord Radstock and his disciple, Col. Vasili Pashkov, did resemble American Restorationism in some respects:  in its aversion to denominational labels and in its emphasis upon the New Testament as its model for Christian life.

While The Other Revolution tells its story well, it breaks little new ground over standard accounts of Russian Evangelical Christians by Walter Sawatsky, Michael Rowe, Hans Brandenburg, and Edmund Heier.  An exception is its coverage of U.S. Disciples of Christ ties to Evangelical Christian leader Ivan Prokhanov (pp. 147-50; 172-73).  American Disciples ultimately, but reluctantly, concluded that the Russian Evangelical Christian movement had closer kinship to Russian Baptists than to American Restorationists.  To order, contact:  ACU Press, 1648 Campus Ct., Abilene, TX 79601; tel:  800-444-4228; fax:  915-674-6471; e-mail:  sloanb@nicanor.acu.edu. 

Resources, East-West Church & Ministry Report 6 (Spring 1998), 14-15.

Written permission is required for reprinting or electronic distribution of any portion of the East-West Church & Ministry Report.

© 1998 East-West Church and Ministry Report
ISSN 1069-5664

EWC&M Report | Contents | Search Back Issues | From Our Readers | Subscribe