Someone asked me what it was like to live in a car for 62 hours… Here’s what I (Katya Snead) wrote:
“You know, when I think about that experience now, I do it with a smile. We saw so much love and care from people – folks from the villages around the border brought out sandwiches and tea for us, helping in different ways. We met some believing women from a city in northern Ukraine that were very discouraged, and David was able to encourage them and pray with them. He also helped them find contacts for where to go in the EU, as they were just driving out of the country without a place to stay. We cried and prayed together when we saw how families were saying goodbye to their husbands and fathers.* We saw the kindness of the Poles, who came up to us at the parking lot of our hotel, asking us if we needed anything. I’m glad I experienced this – it was worth it.
We got our one-year visas today in the EU. It was a very interesting process, as we don’t plan to stay that long** and don’t want to be official refugees. However, we are required to register and are automatically given visas. The refugees at the center that helped us get registered are mostly women with kids that live here only temporarily. You can feel the fear, the lostness in the atmosphere there, but the workers there are amazing – they explain everything and calm everyone very well.
We even got to help an older woman call her daughter in Ukraine, give her information on where to drive to, and refill her phone balance so that she could call without using our phones. I sat there asking God, ‘Why am I here? I don’t need all of this help – I want to help others!‘
There were other, less pleasant events in our coming here. One time, when we went to the store, an older man tried to cut between our family members in line at the cashier. He cussed and yelled at us, even throwing our groceries on the ground.”
*Ukraine has banned the exit of any man between the ages of 18-60, so that they can be drafted into the military.
**David wasn’t given a 1-year visa, as he is an American and can only stay for 90 days maximum.
The journey here has not been easy, but we see God’s hand in it. Please keep praying for our family as we try to minister to Ukraine and Ukrainians while “in exile.”
Here are some pictures from our journey: