Tomorrow, May 9th, Russia will be celebrating its national holiday, Victory Day. One of the biggest Russian holidays, Victory Day marks Germany's surrender to the Soviet Union in 1945, ending the bloodiest war in Russia's history. It has become known as the Great Patriotic War. More than 25 million Russians died in the four years of fighting.
But today, May 8, 2011, on this sweet Mother's Day, it is the Lord's Victory Day! We announced this morning to all the missionaries in our Russia Moscow Mission and to the members of our Moscow District that the Brethren have approved Moscow to become a Stake! The incredible joy and graditude that we all feel is beyond any words. Tears were flowing freely this morning as this long-awaited news came. Missionary work officially began in Moscow in 1991, and thousands of members, missionaries, and leaders have worked diligently since then to bring about the Lord's work.
Under the direction of Elder Russell M. Nelson, on June 5, 2011, the Moscow Russia Stake will be organized. As missionaries and members here we have a lot of work to do in preparation for this long-waited blessing. We know Satan will continue to throw his "fiery darts" as we go forth with these final preparations, but the Lord's will and ways will triumph. The Moscow Russia Stake will be the first stake in all of Russia. Stephen and I say all the time that we never would have believed that, in our lifetime, not only would missionary work be allowed in Russia but a stake established as well. Miracles happen!!!
In one of my earlier posts I gave the link to view "That Vast Empire - Mormon Missionary Work in Russia" on YouTube or to click on the website http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1wEJizTHK6E&. I hope you will view this again and feel with us these tender mercies of the Lord.
This is a day of thanksgiving for the Lord's children. It's a great day of victory for the faithfulness of our Russian members and all the missionaries who have served throughout Russia. Today is the Lord's Victory Day!