It was an emotional morning here in Conroe on Friday, March 11, 2022 at The Montgomery County Veterans Memorial Park, located at I-45 and Texas Highway 105.

The Lutheran community showed up. I saw Don and Maxine Watts, and Marshall and Ann Toppel from Grace Lutheran Church, and below, Margie Taylor from Tree of Life Lutheran Church.

Margie is the host of Conroe Culture News Hour, Mondays at noon on FM radio 104.5/106.1, Our City TV in Conroe, Facebook Live, and YouTube Live.

Margie Taylor

I also had time to visit briefly with Conroe Mayor Jody Czajkoski and Mayor Pro Tem Raymond McDonald (below) who also is pastor at the Conroe Vineyard Church

Mayor Pro Tem Raymond McDonald

Kelly McDonald and Janeen McSwain from the Montgomery County Veterans Memorial Commission served as emcees.

I had the pleasure of meeting for the first time Judge Jimmie C. Edwards III, USMC ret. (below). Among his comments:

“Vladimir Putin is not at war with Ukraine; he is at war with the world.”

“When the snake is in the house there is no need to discuss its length.”

The main speaker was Houstonite and Ukrainian tennis pro Dariya Dashutina (below). From Ukraine’s second largest city, Kharkiv, her father there has endured 600 bombs dropped on the city. She spoke of the “active genocide in Ukraine,” and very specifically about the help they are requesting from the U.S.: a no fly zone. If we let this stand, who is next? Finland? The Czech Republic? Alaska?

Also present was Ukrainian exchange student Anya Arseienko (below), who is at Lake Creek High School in Montgomery. Will she be able to go home? To what will she return?

Six Ukrainian flags were presented to six local dignitaries. Most will be hung from the bridge over the pond at this park. One was hoisted as the Ukrainian national anthem played.

The vídeo below is of the raising of the Ukrainian flag.

Lutherans have boots on the ground. Lutheran churches in neighboring countries are housing the millions of refugees pouring over the border, in churches and in homes. We have a six-year plan to support the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Hungary, the German Evangelical Lutheran Church of Ukraine (GELCU), the Evangelical Church of the Augsburg Confession in Poland (ECACP), Evangelical Church of the Augsburg Confession in Romania (ECACR), Evangelical Church of the Augsburg Confession in Slovakia (ECACS). These churches are responding generously and are understandably nervous. “Could we be next?”

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Please pray for Ukraine. 🇺🇦🇺🇸