http://www.barnabasfund.org Pastor David (Dmitri) Shestakov was released on 21 January after serving four years in prison. Following his release, David told Barnabas Fund’s coordinator for the Former Soviet Union that the prayers of Barnabas Fund supporters gave him power to stay faithful.
David was arrested during a Sunday service at his church, and he was found guilty of “incitement to religious hatred” in May 2007. He was sentenced to four years at a remote labour camp, many miles from his home and family. Barnabas Fund supported his family financially and in prayer during his jail term and called for his release through a letter-writing campaign.
David had been active in outreach to Muslims in his community, prompting the authorities to target him and regularly raid Christian gatherings. During his imprisonment, he endured harsh conditions and suffered severe health problems due to lack of food and extreme temperatures. He refused to renounce his faith, despite coming under pressure to do so.
- Give thanks for David’s release, and pray that the authorities will not resume their harassment.
- Pray for David as he returns to his wife and daughters. Pray that he will fully recover from his time in prison and that he will know the support of his family and his fellow believers and, most importantly, the comfort and provision of the Lord.