LONDON, 11 February 2014/IHQ/ – A WARM welcome greeted the Outreach Team of officers and soldiers from the Russia Division (Divisional Leaders Captains Alexander and Svetlana Sharov) as they arrived in Sochi to begin their Olympic Outreach Ministry. Having left temperatures in the region of -25°C in northern Russia, the team arrived in the city of Sochi, by the Black Sea, to seemingly tropical daytime temperatures between +10 and +18°C.
The Salvation Army Olympic Outreach Team is decked out in colour coordinated jackets and Salvation Army aprons emblazoned with the Red Shield in Russian. The team is providing hot drinks to those who come to the Fun Zone where groups gather to watch Olympic events on a large television screen that has been set up by the local church. More than 200 cups of tea and coffee are shared daily along with a local delicacy, not unlike a bagel. The team is also supplying small calendars with Salvation Army images and details about how to get more information through their website.
Sunday was a special day for the team as they joined together in worship with the church they are working with in the Fun Zone. ‘There is something very special when the Body of Christ worships together and serves the community,’ said Lieut-Colonel Wendy Walters (Territorial Secretary for Women’s Ministries, Eastern Europe Territory). ‘This has been a major faith step for the Eastern Europe Territory and we give God be the glory for the lives that are being touched over these days.’ The 2014 Winter Olympic Games are scheduled to take place from 7-23 February 2014.