My name is Valeriia Alipova, and I’m from Zaporozhe, in east Ukraine.
I came to Canada with the Mennonite Voluntary Service (MVS), a year and four months ago.
I would like to share a story of where I have seen the light of God in my life.
When I first came to Winnipeg, I had many challenges: new country, new language, new people. For the first time in my life, I was away from family, church, and friends. I so was worried about my future life, I forgot to enjoy the present.
But I knew God was there. Through all my worries I could see a light—the light of God, in people around me.
Since coming here, I’ve met so many interesting, generous, and lovely people! I could hardly believe how friendly people are in Winnipeg—especially the people at Bethel Mennonite church.
They welcomed me with open hearts.
People invited me over for supper to their homes, taking me grocery shopping, to concerts, Jets games, and sailing.
When I struggled with homesickness, they spent time with me, showing me God’s love and support. They gave me opportunities to learn and to grow, in both relationships with people, and with God.
It’s the same for me here at CMU. So remember: you can be the light of God in someone’s life this year!
Valeriia Alipova is entering her second year at CMU. She originally shared this in chapel during the 2016-17 school year.