Praise and Prayer Requests
Please Pray for Steve's Travel. He leaves for Austin on the 8th from Kiev
Pray for our Daughter. We expect the birth on May 18th. It will take place in Austin at the St. David's Women's Center in Northwest Austin.
Please continue to pray for Stevie as he gets the chance to spend time with his grandparents and as he adjusts to life with a baby sister and then transitions back to Kiev.
Thank you for prayers for the medical transition. Dawn's doctor here says both she and the baby are doing well.
Pray for Steve as he reconnects with friends on this side of the ocean over the next couple of months. Pray that despite the new baby, he would have a chance for rest and refreshment.
Pray for our finances as we look forward to a new child and adjust for medical and related travel expenses.
Pray that we all would be ready, both emotionally and logistically (documents, etc.) to return to Ukraine in August with enthusiasm.
Sparks Ministry Blog
Keep watching our Blog as our family changes and we move from one side of the Atlantic to the other.
Our Support Report
I've mentioned this in the past but wanted this time to ask for specific prayer.
Our support has been in minor flux over the past few months. We appreciate your continued personal sacrifice and pray and ask for your continued dedication to our mission.
If you need more information about giving to our ministry please don't hesitate to ask. We would love to talk to you about how you can help.
If you have any difficulty with getting support payments or need more information on our prayer needs at anytime, please feel free to email us. If you need help getting a checking or credit card set up you can also call MTW at 1-866-373-6133.
The donations address is:
Mission to the World (#10572), P.O. Box 116284, Atlanta, GA 30368-6284 The #10572 is our account number and needs to be included on the check.
How to Set Up Support
We get asked at times how you go about supporting our ministry.
While we recently reached the needed level to move to Ukraine, we will always need additional support team mebers through the months and years!
The first decision is on a means of support. This can be:
1. Financial Support
2. Prayer Support
3. Both 1 & 2
The next step would be to notify us or Mission to the World (MTW) that you would like to be a ministry partner.
This can be accomplished by
1. Emailing us with how you would like to partner and, if the partnership involves financial support, include the amount and frequency. (You can simply reply to this newsletter.)
2. You can also print and mail the form at the end of this newsletter to MTW. You then specify the details as outlined on the form.
3. If you have one of our prayer cards then detach the bottom part and mail that card to Mission to the World.
When you begin financial support you can pay by check, bank draft or credit card.
Checks and Automated payments can be mailed to:
Mission to the World (#10572), P.O. Box 116284, Atlanta, GA 30368-6284
The #10572 is our account number and needs to be included on the check.
Credit Cards can be set up on the MTW Website or by calling 1-866-373-6133
Additional details about donations can be found
here at this link
We wanted to give you a quick update before the summer comes and all our activities get very busy:
This newsletter includes:
1. Steve Travel
2. Ukraine Visa
2. These past few weeks
3. Future in Ukraine
- Please pray for our mission.
- Prayer Requests on left
- Blog Address on left
- Pledge Card at the bottom
Our Mailing Address in Ukraine is:
Steve and Dawn Sparks
Prospect Pobedy 105, Kb. 55
Our Skype Contact
Skype # - 512-879-9900
Skype ID - stevenssparks
While we are staying in the USA (see details below), our mailing address will be
Steve and Dawn Sparks
c/o Kathy Sparks
8932 North Plaza Ct.
Austin, TX 78753
Dawn - 512-426-4085
Steve - 512-947-0963
Our current needs center around medical expenses for the birth of our daughter and all the things a new little girl needs for the next couple of years.
I've been considering the fastest way for me to travel back to the USA. The first thought was a Concorde. That would be a pretty smooth and fast ride. The second idea came to me when I was recently touring the World War II Museum in Kiev. They had a Soviet Era ICBM on display. I think this might get me back pretty fast but I suspect the ride and the in-flight service might not be much. I'll stick with Delta on this trip.
I leave for the USA on the 8th of May. You are likely reading this very close to or even after that day. We would appreciate your prayers for the travel. We also ask for prayers for our family and extended family as we live with Steve's mom in Austin for the next few months. During that time we will have a lot of paperwork and adjusting to complete before our planned return to Ukraine on August 1.
Our Ukrainian Visa
During the next few months one of the must do items on our list will be to renew our visas for Ukraine. The laws and the process have gotten much more complex over this past year. Please pray for this process. We believe it should be fine but really would appreciate your encouragement and prayers.
These past few weeks
During the past month, while I have been in Kiev these items were discussed in different venues:
1. Opportunity for new churches. We are always talking about how and when another church can be planted. There is a lot to consider and a lot that needs to be done. However, as just the idea for a new church or more is very exciting, I always like to mention that when it is being discussed!
2. Attended the Ukraine Presbytery meeting in Belgorod-Dnistrovsky. The trip is overnight by train and then a 60 to 90 minute bus ride. The variance in time depends on how aggressive the driver of the bus is that day. During the meeting we had a great report on potential church planters that are working themselves through the process. The start of a new church plant is still more than a year away, however these reports were very encouraging. We also had the official Ukraine Denomination Book of Church Order released in a printed and professionally edited book. It was very exciting to see everyone open the new books and begin using then right away. You have to really be a "Presbytery Geek" to appreciate the idea, it was very fun.
3. I was also in Lviv, Ukraine. During this trip I was able to see the city and visit the with some of the team members from MTW that are planting a church there. Their activities are very exciting and they are making great progress. They have begun worship services in Ukrainian and are being well received. I look forward to hearing more. During this time we also had a meeting of our various teams working in Ukraine. It was nice to sit down and talk about our vision, the plan for more churches and what opportunities we have in the pipeline. It is very exciting to see all the efforts in Ukraine. I can't say things are moving as fast as we would really like, but progress is being made and the Gospel is being shared. During the meeting I was able to listen to a report about a youth conference we had with all the churches and church planting efforts in Ukraine (about 10). It was fun to hear how the youth were able to worship and encourage each other during the conference. I did hear the facility was a bit "rustic'. I'll let you imagine what that might mean. I suspect, however, that your imagination might not come close. :)
|Future in Ukraine
Dawn and I are looking forward to our continued ministry in Ukraine. This past year Steve has mostly been involved in activities that include the Evangelical Reformed Seminary, but also has been included informally in activities that include other aspects of the ministries here in Ukraine.
Since I (Steve) have been working with Jon Eide, the Kiev team leader (who is also the MTW Area Director over all the Ukraine mission), and have at times been interacting with him on missional items outside the seminary, the opportunity has arisen for that relationship to be a bit more formal.
Some of the specific details still need to be vetted; however, we see the next few years here in Ukraine as an opportunity for me to work with Jon as well as other Team and Seminary leaders. I'll be an Advisor to Jon and work with him on some country level ideas including future church planting efforts, reviewing how we manage some of our budgets as well as providing assistance to other leaders in planning and moving forward their specific efforts in church planting in Ukraine. It is exciting for me because I really get an opportunity to work with the global mission in Ukraine and help move forward and define the vision and execution of that vision in Ukraine. I appreciate Jon working with me on developing this opportunity.
Additionally, as I am also working on my own seminary studies and am working through the internship requirements with the South Texas Presbytery, I will be able to have a broader arena for preaching and teaching opportunities throughout Ukraine since I have been and will continue to build my relationships with the National Pastors and Church Planters.
We look forward to our return in August. Please pray for our family and specifically for Dawn, Stevie and our unborn daughter.
Thank you for your continued prayers and support.
Sincerely in Christ,
Steve, Dawn and Steven