STUDY ABROAD and REACH MUSLIMS!
Why the Caucasus? The Caucasus are considered the “Wild West” of Russia. Here Russian Orthodoxy meets Islam. The North Caucasus is made up of seven semi-autonomous republics, which have been Muslim for generations, and have an entirely different culture from Russia. It is a land of unreached people groups – 31 in all: Chechen, Ingush, Avar, Balkar, Nogai, Kumyk, etc. Many are worn out from the constant instability and violence in the region and are looking for hope. Now is the time for the church to rise among them! We, the directors, live outside the Islamic republics in a strategic city that is a hub for the entire region. Transportation, business, politics, and education are the core of our city. Young people come from all over the republics to study here. So, while it’s dangerous to travel to many of these republics and nearly impossible for foreigners to live there, we can eat lunch with young people from the republics everyday in a university. Here we share the message of the cross with the future leaders of the North Caucasus.
What’s the big picture? We believe that as God radically changes the lives of students, we will see a student discipleship movement begin. When these students return to their cities and villages, God will use them to start a house church movement that will spread throughout the North Caucasus.
Where are the North Caucasus mountains of Russia? The Caucasus are in the Southwest corner of Russia – the warmest part! The weather is similar to the north in the United States.
What will I do? You will experience the culture of the Caucasus. You will learn to share the gospel with Muslims and Russian Orthodox students. You will drink lots of tea. You will study the Russian language. You will build deep friendships. You will work in a tight-knit team. You will visit the highest mountain in Europe. You will lead a small group. The list goes on!
What will an average day look like? Five days a week, we’ll meet together in the morning for team prayer. Then, you’ll have Russian language classes, you’ll complete coursework from your school, you’ll spend time meeting students and building relationships, and you’ll participate in one-on-one discipleship meetings. In the evenings, you’ll have Bible study, English Club, and special events with students. On the weekends, you’ll have some time off, you’ll be able to spend time with students, and you’ll help with a church plant for Muslim-background believers. We strongly believe in community, so we’ll hang out as a team often! Our team members come from Russia, parts of Asia, and the United States.
How can I immediately jump into ministry if I can’t speak Russian? Do I have to know Russian before I come? One of the great advantages of working in a linguistic university is that so many of the students already speak English and they desperately want to practice with a native speaker! You’ll be able to start building relationships and sharing the gospel from the first day you arrive.
How many Russian classes will I take? You’ll be in class 9 hours a week and will need to do about 1 hour of homework per day. The university will evaluate your Russian language and you’ll be placed in a class according to your level.
Where will I live? You’ll live in the university dorms and will have an incredible opportunity to share life with the students you’ll be reaching!
How will I get a visa? The university will give you a student visa.
How long will I be there? Depending on which semester you’ll be with us, you’ll either come for 4 or 6 months. The spring semester in Russia is a little longer than in the States, running from January till June. Or of course we’d love for you to come for the entire school year: September – June.
How much will it cost? Assemblies of God World Missions will set a monthly budget that will cover your living expenses as a MAPS worker, and you may raise that support through friends and family. A semester at our university roughly costs $1,250.00 USD, which includes tuition and housing.
I’m interested. What do I do from here? First, pray. It’s important that you know God is calling you to commit this time to join our team in the Caucasus. Then talk with a person at your university who facilitates study abroad and internship programs. (You may also contact us if you have questions, but your school will need to approve your internship before we can start the process from our end.)
To begin your journey, fill out this form and enter the Eurasia Pipeline! We’d love to see you in Russia and are excited to connect with you!