Stepanyda Parfentievna Balika was born on February 17, 1957 in Ukraine. She was the fifth of five children. Her parents were Parfentii and Ioana Toarka. Stepanyda’s father was sent to a Siberian prison for 10 years because of his faith, and Stepanyda was born after he returned from prison. She grew up in a God-fearing home, very loved by her other four siblings. In 1975 she married Petro Balika, and together they received eight children, five boys and three girls. Michael, their second child died at the age of 29 from cancer.
Stepanyda gave her heart to Jesus from a very young age, and she put her whole trust in God and faithfully served Him. Stepanyda and Petro lived in Ukraine from 1957 until 2007. They were both farmers and very hardworking. Stepanyda was a homemaker, caring for her children, but was also a big part of their farm/greenhouse business.
In 1996 they met Brunstad Christian Church. Stepanyda worked with all her heart to instill in her children the same love she had in her heart for Jesus and His church. She faithfully served many in Ukraine, and her goodness and warmth were experienced by many. She loved serving her friends and family.
In January 2007, they moved to United States with several of their children. Their home was an open and hospitable one, both in Ukraine and in the United States, and many friends visited there. She would often say that it was a feast when the friends come over. As she grew older, Stepanyda’s health did not allow her to be at many fundraisers, but she helped were she could, and she happily sent Petro to all the fundraisers, sometimes several evenings a week and weekends.
Despite a language barrier, their home was always open for the friends, and many times delicious food was served by Stepanyda. She loved to cook, and this was something that she could bless the others with. In 2015, Stepanyda was diagnosed with breast cancer, and she recovered from that. She used her time extra diligently after that, and said it was a second chance God gave her to serve and be ready. She was very enthusiastic about the church and the friends, and being together with the friends was a highlight of her life. Stepanyda made things very special for her 16 grandchildren and other children that came to visit their home. She made them feel special and knew exactly what each one of them liked. Her love and care for whomever she came in contact with was a great example for many. She leaves a shining example of serving the others with the pound she was given. She spent the last two months of her life in the hospital seriously ill, but she never complained. On September 20, 2020, God took her home where she longed to be. Her memory is a blessing.
To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Stepanyda Parfentievna Balika, please visit our floral store.