DECEMBER 16, 2020
Born: 1987 (Chunoyar, Krasnoyarsk Territory)
Biography: His family moved frequently, living in Azerbaijan and Ukraine. Has worked as a builder, sales consultant, guitar teacher, and a tutor of English and Chinese. Enjoys sports and also writes poetry and music. Speaks four languages. His wife, Kristina, also speaks Chinese
Began reading and studying the Bible at age 13. The more he studied, the more he realized the Bible contained answers to all his questions about life. This led him to dedication and baptism in 2006
On June 6, 2019, a criminal case was opened against Brother Ruslan Alyev that led to his detention on June 10, 2019. After spending 24 hours in detention, Ruslan and another brother, Semyon Baybak, were placed under house arrest. Ruslan’s term was initially for eight weeks, but it has been extended nine times. As a result, he has been under house arrest for 18 months. Under house arrest, Ruslan cannot associate with anyone except his attorney, the investigator, the inspector, and his wife. Use of the Internet is forbidden, along with receiving or sending any other correspondence.
Ruslan says that prior to his detention, he and his wife, Kristina, often spoke about how this type of persecution was just a matter of time. “We tried to maintain a good spiritual schedule,” he says. “Persecution was something we were well aware of from our Yearbooks and brothers’ biographies. We noticed that they were able to find humor and not get discouraged even in the most difficult situations.” Ruslan adds: “We asked Jehovah for strength to deal with all that lies ahead.”
Discussing these possible scenarios with others also benefited Ruslan. “I researched many comforting thoughts from the Bible and encouraging articles in order to calm and encourage many of the publishers in the congregation. Then, when I needed comfort, those same scriptures and articles that I had researched and memorized consoled me.”
Both Ruslan and Kristina benefited from being prepared for persecution. When their home was being searched, he says: “I felt calm and had almost no anxiety.” During the investigation process, the investigator threatened to also open a criminal case against Kristina. “The potential for criminal prosecution did not scare my Kristina. This encouraged me very much and gave me strength,” Ruslan recalls.
Ruslan’s house arrest has created numerous challenges. Yet, Ruslan notes: “In regard to maintaining my material, spiritual, and emotional condition, Jehovah always does whatever is necessary, and I didn’t expect anything else. For our part, we long ago became accustomed to his help and learned to be content with a simple life. As such, we didn’t have any undue anxieties.”
At one of the court hearings for the extension of Ruslan’s house arrest term, supporters were not allowed in the courtroom. But our brothers and sisters gathered outside the courtroom and applauded when he exited, also shouting: “Ruslan, we are with you!”
How grateful we are for the fine examples of our brothers and sisters in Russia. Although persecuted without cause, they continue to show their complete trust in Jehovah.—Psalm 118:6-9.
^ par. 3 Subject to change.