How God led me to CCX Ukraine: A Short Story of Kirill Plado from Odessa

Recently a new member joined our team of staff workers – Kirill Plado.

He is the South Region Coordinator of CCX Ukraine, centered in Odessa. It seemed to us that it would be unfair to miss this chance to learn more about him. So we pass on to you what we’ve learned!

Age 26.Married to Zarina. Has a son.

Hobbies: active sports (football, basketball, etc.); travelling. Currently he is reading a book by Eric Metaxas “Bonhoeffer: Pastor, Martyr, Prophet, Spy: A Righteous Gentile vs. the Third Reich”.

Kirill says: I was bought up on Christian principles from early childhood.  I was born in Odessa, in a family of a believing mother (my father left her when she was pregnant). I behaved myself until I was 16 years old, and then I decided to leave the church. After I completed school I entered the Marine Academy in Odessa, but left it in less than six months because of lack of money. I wanted to become an architect, but I did not make it because a day before my 18th birthday I was drafted into the army.

During my service, my cousin began to attend the Odessa People's Church. When I returned from the army, I decided to go with him. Fortunately, it was Easter. I always knew that God exists. I knew that I sin by doing bad things. Although I cannot say that, having come to church, everything suddenly turned around and life became completely different from that day. Nevertheless, at that time I acknowledged to myself that I want to become like Christ. What is the point of going to the church and staying the same? I was restless, could not sit still. In an effort to serve God "where I am," I helped at church: sat behind the projector, sang in the choir and even sometimes preached at youth meetings. I wanted to do everything to the maximum, as much as possible. I was serving in my own strength, to try to please God.

One day, Ivan Rusin, the rector of the Ukrainian Evangelical Theological Seminary visited our church and invited our church members to study theology at the seminary.At that moment it seemed to me that this would be the last place I would go. However, soon after that, I felt that God was calling me to study.In 2012, I started my education in Pushcha-Vodytsa and studied there until 2015. During the training, I noticed how God began to reveal leadership qualities in me. First, I was appointed as a senior student leader, and later I was asked to become a youth pastor at the Baptist church. I also participated in the project called “YES, HE IS” as an online missionary. The experience I received over these three years is priceless.

After graduation, along with my bride Zarina (she is from Vladikavkaz, North Ossetia), I was invited to lead a church in the city of Dzerzhinsk, Donetsk region: they organized a Christian group during the war, but had no pastor. Together with the missionary organization, I went to the city and got inspired to serve in the east, but since I was engaged at that time, I could not make a decision for us both.  When I returned from the trip, I told my future wife about my plans, and we began to pray about it. Soon we both realized that it would be too hard for a young family, and we refused this offer.

We went back to Odessa, where after a while, I was appointed a youth pastor in my own home church.During the time of my ministry as a youth minister in Odessa, my team and I organized a youth movement called "Platforma" (Platform). Its primary goal is to share the Gospel with youth. We organized large-scale picnics for 500 - 800 people and established relations with various organizations. We also organized out-of-town trips for young people every three months. At the moment, up to a hundred people attend that youth ministry and are learning to live for Jesus, and in this I see the hand of God.  I handed the youth ministry Platforma over to my assistant, who has been serving in the ministry all these years, because I feel that God is calling me to move forward. 

Today, I am a staff worker of CCX, dreaming that the hand of God will continue to lead me in this ministry. My first task in Odessa is to create a team of students who will later serve at local universities. I believe that the basis of any success is not a person, but a team following God. I dream God will raise up 20 young leaders who will be competent to share the truths of their convictions.