Russian troops launched their anticipated attack on Ukraine on Thursday. The invasion began with big explosions before dawn in Kyiv, Kharkiv and Odessa as world leaders decried the start of an invasion that could cause massive casualties, topple Ukraine's democratically elected government and threaten the post-Cold War balance on the continent.
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy implores the world for help. "What we have heard today are not just missile blasts, fighting and the rumble of aircraft. This is the sound of a new iron curtain, which has come down and is closing Russia off from the civilised world. If you don't help us now, if you fail to offer strong assistance to Ukraine, tomorrow the war will knock on your door."
Earlier, Ukraine's Health Minister Oleh Lyashko said 57 people had been killed and 169 wounded on Thursday after Russia launched a full scale invasion of Ukraine.
Christian leaders have also responded to the sitaution. Tim Tebow encourages Christians to pray, "Please join me in prayer for the people of Ukraine including our Night to Shine host churches, friends with special needs, and our ministry partners in country. Psalm 46:1 - God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble."
Martin Smith concurs, "Praying that the miracle of 'peace' would come soon. Also, to all the God fearing, peace loving people in Russia. Thankyou for being brave in your anti-war protests today. Standing against your leaders WILL be noticed. God be with Ukraine tonight and God be with us all."
Suzanne Grishman, executive director for Mercury One, writes, "When crises and disasters break out around the world, Americans always step up. In the coming days and weeks, no doubt there'll be crucial and tangible ways to get humanitarian aid to the people of Ukraine. Right now, though, we call all Americans and all those around the world who love freedom to pray intensely for the people in Ukraine suffering under the evil aggression of Putin's Russia."
"Our mission is very simple: to save Jewish lives. We have been working in Ukraine every day for 30 years, and now our friends there desperately need our help," says the International Fellowship of Jews and Christians' president and CEO Yael Eckstein. "We know this country, and we know those who are in need. They're not numbers to us - they're our neighbors. And we are prepared to do our part to help those who need it the most, and who need it now.
"We've already been in the process of evacuating children from schools in Eastern Ukraine. We've already provided food and various other forms of assistance to those who are in harm's way. But there's much, much more work to do. We're on the front lines doing the work."
"Pray for God to send a miracle of peace to calm the stormy seas. But, as Jews are fond of remembering: while we believe in miracles, we never rely on them. In fact, now we are relying on you, as God has led us to help others threatened by bombs and rocket fire."