An Inside Look at Billy Graham Chaplains’ Ministry in Ukraine

By Ron Nickel   •   April 28, 2022

Distraught, Faddei* showed up to the Samaritan's Purse Emergency Field Hospital in Lviv, Ukraine. Faddei said his village was 25 percent annihilated and 900 people died—including his son. As he explained what happened, two crisis-trained chaplains from the Billy Graham Rapid Response Team were there to listen, pray and offer encouragement. Name changed for privacy.
People like Faddei* are why dozens of Billy Graham chaplains are ministering in three Ukrainian cities alongside sister ministry Samaritan's Purse. They're offering emotional and spiritual care to Ukrainians, while Samaritan's Purse has served tens of thousands of people by providing medical care and distributing food and other life-saving supplies. Every morning, the ministries gather to start the day with a devotion and prayer.
Next to a Billy Graham chaplain, medical intern Anna prays over a patient before surgery. She recently came to know Christ after starting to work at the clinic.
One man (not pictured) told a chaplain how he had lived in an area that was heavily destroyed—and lost his mother during the conflict. The chaplain told him about Jesus, and he decided to start a relationship with Him. While he mourned the loss of his mother, he found a new relationship in our heavenly Father. Read more stories of Ukrainians coming to know Christ.
One of the Samaritan's Purse clinics is located in the parking garage at the bottom of King Cross Mall—a direct reminder they're working for the King and it’s all about the cross. Here, a chaplain talks to a barista while grabbing a coffee, using every opportunity to share the love of God.
A young girl at Lviv's bus station doesn't know where her family will go next. Approximately 11 million people have fled their homes since the start of the conflict.
On April 18, at least seven people were killed in an airstrike near this outpatient clinic at the bus depot in Lviv. Franklin Graham, who has been to Ukraine twice during the conflict, posted on Facebook, asking for prayer. "As Russia builds up its forces in the east, pray that the Ukrainian people will be strong. Let’s continue to ask Almighty God to intervene and that the death and destruction will end."
When encouraging prayer for Ukraine, Franklin Graham also shared Isaiah 26:4, which says, "Trust in the LORD forever, for the LORD, the LORD himself, is the Rock eternal.” Even on a foggy morning in a war zone, a church steeple stands high—a sign of hope.
A chaplain and translator stand with the family of a man who just woke up from an appendix operation. While the medical clinic helps with injuries obtained in the conflict, they also help those with other medical issues at a time they can't access regular care.
Trying to get a smile, a Samaritan’s Purse doctor makes squeaky noises with a balloon while offering it to a child.
In a secluded area of a bus station, displaced Ukrainians find momentary rest.
At every bed post at the clinic, there's a different Bible verse posted both in Ukrainian and English. It's a reminder for patients, staff and chaplains that God is with them—and for them.
It’s a tradition in Ukraine for eggs to be decorated using beeswax and dye for Easter. This “pysanky” writing is a tradition, symbolizing rebirth and abundance during spring festivals. Watch Franklin Graham's Easter message, recorded in Ukraine.
Doctors and nurses are working around the clock.
A tearful woman accepts prayer as she anticipates an unknown future.
Billy Graham once said, “We can change the course of events if we go to our knees in believing prayer.” Will you pray for the people of Ukraine, Billy Graham chaplains and Samaritan's Purse staff?