One of our ministries in Győr continues to grow very well. MOPS (Mothers of pre-schoolers) which is run by Kathy and our Győr church Director of family ministries Sarah Berta-Somogyi, is a wonderful ministry to young mothers and their children. Today a total of eleven mothers came and brought their kids. Some of these mums are now beginning to come along to worship also and bring their kids with them!
MOPS is a twice monthly program where these woman come together to hear quality Christian teaching, have fellowship and allow their kids to play together in a safe and loving environment. Many young mothers are lonely and this is a wonderful way for them to connect with others.
Sarah has been an incredible driving force in getting his group started and Kathy has been so faithful in always translating (when needed), sharing her experiences as a mother of older children and leading as needed. The two of them make an awesome team and both of these mighty women of God are showing the love of Christ to many young women in the city.
Please pray that more and more of these women would come to Christ, that their families would call Him Lord and that our church and other churches in the city would grow through this ministry.
Today at church we launched our latest project of ‘Welcome packages’ for children going into the temporary floor at the care home we serve in.
Many of these children have been taken from their families and placed in state care. This can be for a large number of reasons, for example parents may be sentenced to time in prison, addicted to alcohol or drugs etc. and the kids need a safe place. When they arrive, these kids often have nothing of their own. As a church, lead by Kathy, Sarah Anderson and Sylvia we will be providing a welcome package to each child as they enter the care system in our city.
From the photo below you can see what each package will contain. We want to invite you to also partner with us in this project. You may either send a financial contribution or stop by our church on a Sunday afternoon (if you live close by) and bring some of the listed items. We also want to encourage you to pray with us for these children. We so desire that they cme to know Christ as their Saviour!!! Through His love and sacrifice we believe that these boys and girls can be saved from those who would prey upon them and force them into prostitution (as is so often the case). In Christ, they also can have life eternal and Victory!
Would you be willing to partner with us in prayer every Wednesday afternoon? Every Wednesday from 3.45 to 5.45 both my wife and our colleague Sarah Anderson go to the local orphanage. They teach the kids English, do handicrafts and lend a listening ear. We have been granted access to both the permanent and temporary floors which can total up to 26 kids. This is a wonderful opportunity to share the Gospel! It is also an excellent way for Sarah to improve her Hungarian language skills as she interacts with the kids and staff. Kathy teaches Sarah and the rest of the Anderson family Hungarian on a weekly basis and the orphanage is one of many places where they need to speak Hungarian.
This Wednesday was tough emotionally. The children on the temporary floor may have secure family visitation (when a social worker is present) on Wednesdays. This week as one of the kids came back in tears it really
touched Kathy and she felt somewhat emotional and upset. Many of these kids have gone through such terrible experiences. In this case, one sibling was fostered but the one in tears was not and had to remain behind at the orphanage, now separated from all family.
A great blessing this week was that Sylvia, a member of our local church, joined in helping with this ministry! Such a blessing to see people live out their faith!
Please pray with us for strength, courage, love and wisdom as we seek to help the ‘least of these’.
Sylvia, one of our church leaders came up with a wonderful idea!
She had begun making jars of jam (jelly for American readers) for people in need. She knows that many Hungarians have little to offer financially but many do have fruit gardens and could easily donate fruit.
These jars of jam will be used to help feed children in Romania and indeed help needy people here in Hungary!
If you look closely at the jar you will see the logo of the Free Methodist church on the front and a sticker on the lid showing what fruit was used to make the jam. Sylvia wants people to taste the sweetness of Christ in her offering!
Please pray with us that the local church would respond positively and help with this wonderful endeavour. Please pray for Sylvia as she continues to follow God and seeks to live a life full of the Holy Spirit.
I am pleased to report that in partnership with a sister church in Spain, our church in Győr, Hungary raised money to buy a new washing machine for Vis de Copil in Arad, Romania. We also were able to buy food and cleaning products and leave a substantial amount of money for building repairs.
Vis de Copil serve the poorest of the poor (the homeless, families where single unemployed mums look after multiple children, beggars, prostitutes and drug addicts). They offer a hot meal, a place to shower and wash clothes and education and safety for children. It is still awful to see little kids begging daily in Arad but I am grateful that Vis de Copil are doing something to help these little ones!
The current washing machine was on its last legs when I came with a mission team from our church in August. With much love and generosity we could provide this new machine. I am so grateful to our church family in Győr and also to our brothers and sisters in Spain! You are all wonderful, thank you!
Whilst in Arad I was also able to help unload about 400 Christmas shoe boxes from Ireland that arrived. What a blessing to serve in so many ways!
I had the pleasure of being with the Ball family in Arad, Romania these past two days. The Balls (Spencer, Lynsey, Trinity and Jonathan) are working with the poorest of the poor and serving Christ faithfully. Their love and huge hearts for reaching the unloved is so very evident. In the photo above you can see the kids skipping with home-made ropes that Spencer and Lynsey bring their weekly kids Bible group in Vinga (a village near Arad).
Part of the ministry is that the Ball family help to provide food, clothing, medicine and pastoral care to these Roma (Gypsy) communities. Very few people are reaching these little ones…
Would you be willing to support this ministry? If the Lord puts this family and their ministry on your hearts then please contact me for further details.
This past week we held a five day camp at the orphanage in Gyor. We received permission to work with the kids on both floors (each floor belongs to a different government department). From 9am to midday Monday through Friday we sang worship songs, made crafts, had Bible messages and dramas, played football and had lots of fun! Overall we served 20 kids.
A group of seven people from Batavia, New York State www.northgate.fmc.co m joined us and made the camp possible. Together we partnered in helping these kids come to know more about the love of God. We are very grateful to them for their excellent work! Also thanks to Kathy for her very hard work in communicating with both government organisations, translating and hosting the team. Nobody I knows works as tirelessly and selflessly as she does. Special thanks to Csilla, Zsuzsi, Katica, Zsolti, Gabi and Adam for being great volunteers!!!!
On Friday the team enjoyed lunch with the kids at the orphanage. I had a lunch meeting with the Irish ambassador to Hungary and the deputy mayor of Gyõr which was productive and has opened up some possible new doors to ministry in the future. However I think the kids, team and local volunteers had more fun then me 😀
These little ones are in real danger from those who intend evil. Please join us in prayer that lives would be transformed and that the Lord would keep them safe in his hands.
The last few days have been very busy indeed. On Saturday we took three of the boys from the orphanage to the zoo. We had so much fun! They boys loved the animals, particularly the bears, tigers and chimpanzees. My favourite quote of the day was when one of the boys said “Uncle Gerry is just like a bear, except he wears clothes” 😂 Just have to love these kids!!! Kathy prepared sandwiches and drinks so we had a picnic and we all enjoyed ice cream afterwards.
On Thursday we had wonderful visitors from America spend an afternoon and evening with us. Drew and Kathy Price and Bill and Sheri Baker took time out from their European vacation to drop by and visit us in Gyor and hear about our ministry. Drew is pastor of Compass Church in Bend, Oregon http://www.compassbend.com/#/home and they are very missions minded. We look forward to partnering with them in the future!
I’m off to Belgium soon to teach and would appreciate your prayers as I spend the next couple of days in final preparations for that time!
This evening I was blessed to be able to give a presentation on missions to a group of about a dozen young Christian leaders. These young men and women are serving this week at a camp for children and every evening they will have a guest speaker. They had 19 kids turn up today! One of those is a boy from the orphanage we work in and praise God he gave his life to the Lord this summer!!!
They listened well, asked tough and searching questions and were a joy to be with!
It is such a blessing to see so many young adults we have been blessed to work with over the years, such as Alan, Joey and Petra.
Please pray for Csaba this week as he leads.
Today was the fifth and final occasion when a group of believers (including Kathy and Katica) went into a local orphanage for a Saturday morning of witnessing to children. This particular home has two separate floors. One floor is for children who are there on a temporary basis (parents may be in hospital or prison and have no one to care for them). This is the floor they have been to for five Saturdays, once a month for the last five months. Today the team led them in worship music (team members pictured above, we can’t show the kids, song lyrics pictured below), then told them a Bible message based on forgiveness. One of the kids, a seventeen year old boy showed great interest and asked how can he ask for forgiveness? Katica spoke with him afterwards and explained how to pray and ask for forgiveness. Please pray that he would ask Christ into his life.
Starting Wednesday June 24th Kathy will lead a group (including our dear friends from America, the Barnes family) for a three day vacation Bible school at this same home, however this time for children who live there on a permanent basis (their parents are dead or these kids have been taken into full-time state care if no immediate family can care for them). Please be in prayer for Eric as he leads the Bible messages and sport with help from Calvin, Heidi and Muriel as they lead the arts and crafts and worship time and for Kathy and others as they translate and communicate with the kids. Expect a report either June 26th or 27th!