GOD’S WORD CANNOT BE FROZEN
North of the Arctic Circle in Russian Siberia’s Yamal peninsula is a missionary who shares the Gospel with nomadic tribes and tells them about the love of Jesus Christ. The Yamal peninsula juts out nearly 435 miles into the Kara Sea. It is the site of one of the world’s largest gas and oil discoveries. The word Yamal means “the end of the world”, and the area fits its name.
Peter Khudi is one of a handful of Christian missionaries in that area. He is a member of a tribe called the Nenets, who are nomadic reindeer herders. It is the largest of the nomadic tribes, and Peter Khudi has been taking the Gospel to them and other tribes of that area for a number of years. He says, “When I became a Christian, God gave me a new heart. He also gave me new heart for my people.”
In Yamal, people depend on the reindeer for nearly everything-–food, transportation, clothes, shoes, their tepee type homes, etc. Summer and winter the temperatures there range between -30 and -60 degrees Fahrenheit. In the winter the sun shines for only a few hours, but when it rises around noon, it is a spectacular sight.
When Peter Khudi first began his missionary work, he used reindeer for transportation. Today he uses a snowmobile as his main means of getting around, allowing him to travel further to evangelize to other families. Like some areas in Alaska, frozen rivers and lakes provide the highways for the snowmobiles. Cell phones permit him to keep in touch with the people, and generators make life a little easier.
Peter estimates that more than 500 Nenets people have accepted Christ as their Savior in recent years. Thank God for people like Peter Khudi who are willing to endure the harshness of Siberia to carry out the great commission of Jesus Christ. “Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age” (Mathew 28:19-20).