Local Missionary Sent Home From Ukraine Because of Political Upheaval
Posted by Fernanda Lopez, Producer/Reporter - email
A local missionary is back home and safe after the LDS church decided to bring back almost 70 mormon missionaries from Ukraine.
RICHLAND, WA - A local missionary is back home and safe after the LDS church decided to bring back almost 70 mormon missionaries from Ukraine.
Joseph Gelwix was just two months away from completing his two year mission in Ukraine when the church made the decision to bring him home on Thursday and he was on a plane the next day.
Just a month before that he was transferred out of Donetsk to Kiev to escape any dangers.
Gelwix explained he normally felt safe but was yelled at and chased by locals occasionally upset with Americans.
He said he feels for the people there and grew to love their culture and food.
"It was very hard to leave, I fell in love with the Ukrainian people there, they're awesome. But as far as the events happening, we got a lot of hate from people in the far East they saw Americans as kind of part of the problem," said Gelwix.
Although Gelwix's return was quick and unexpected, his mom was glad to have him home for Mother's Day.
He was even able to spend some time with Tanner another local missionary from Richland who is still in Kiev serving his mission.