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.
We had a wonderful quiz event this afternoon. Gerry was the quiz master and Kati translated and hosted all the guests. Nearly 30 people turned up and we had a total of 6 teams. The first place team won by just half a point which made for a very exciting finish.
Kati and I are actively attempting to build community and develop relationships. It was many, many hours of work for us but we hope and pray it will have served as an encouragement to the believers in our group and that some others may begin attending our services. Ultimately we hope that people will come to know the Lord and love Him as we do.
Every Thursday evening, we have Bible study and fellowship in our home for a group of University students. We started in September with seven and last night for our last meeting of the year we totalled fourteen! Our colleagues Larry and Katie Winckles joined us and led an evening of board games.
We started with a gift exchange and snacks and drinks, then we moved into a time of playing board games. Larry is currently producing several games and the young people had the opportunity to test one of them. Everyone enjoyed the evening and we look forward to seeing the group grow and develop!
Mid July and August are often very quiet times for us in ministry. However it is at these quieter times that we begin to look more to the future and ask God to lead us towards new ministry opportunities. One idea we have had is to begin a Bible study group for college age students in Gyor. We are currently planning on a small group of 10-14 people meeting in our home on a weekly basis to study the Bible, have fellowship, disciple and mentor. Under the leadership of Gerry, Zsuzsi and Zsolti we have great hopes for where the Lord is leading us!
The weekly meetings will be held in Hungarian, will focus on subjects relevant to college age students and we hope to delve deeply into questions that they need answers too. With a focus on modern worship music, coffee, sandwiches and snacks we hope it will be a place where these young men and women are refreshed both physically and spiritually. Please pray for us as we continue to plan these weekly studies.
As we do every Summer, our Wednesday Bible study group got together for a meal. After studying the book of Daniel all year it was great to spend an evening in fellowship enjoying good food!
We had Hungarian gulyas soup made the traditional way in a cauldron in the garden. We also has this superb cherry pie that is pictured. Please continue to pray for this small but growing group of believers.
This Sunday we had a wonderful time of Bible study, prayer, worship and fellowship as we celebrated the risen Lord! We were blessed by Yoli and Zsolti leading us in worship, Katica and Kathy taught the children and Gerry lead the teaching time. We remembered the sacrifice of Christ as we partook in communion together. Afterwards we enjoyed a wonderful meal and then had a serious discussion on the direction of our group and how we can reach more people for Christ. I am so blessed by all these great men and women of Christ and I’m very impressed at how the young people are growing in their faith.
The underground church in the Middle East met on Friday. Last year I was blessed to celebrate Easter with them. Please continue to pray for believers who are not free to worship Christ without fear of persecution.
Today then we had the Hungarian tradition of ‘locsolás’. On Easter Monday, males sprinkle their female relatives and close friends with water. It is one of the oldest traditions and it symbolizes rebirth, purity and fertility. The picture below is from last year and is of Zsuzsi being doused with water by Zsolti.
Update December 1st 2015: The work in the Middle East goes from strength to strength. The Lord is blessing this work and now a total of seven groups are in operation (with over 200 people in fellowship). Please be in prayer for these faithful followers of Christ as they continue to reach out to the lost and needy. Please pray particularly for those leading the groups. Pray that those who wish them harm would be thwarted in their attempts and that the Gospel would continue to spread. Thank you!
As many of you know I have not been in Hungary very much this past year. I had the opportunity to go and serve the Lord in an Islamic country in the Middle East that is entirely closed (officially at least) to the Gospel message. It was a real challenge to spend so much time away from my family and I missed them dearly, yet the Lord blessed us greatly in so many ways.
I still need to be cautious about what I write in relation to the ministry in that country as I am worried for the believers who are there. Christians being arrested and thrown into jail for meeting together is commonplace. So I will not name the country here nor will I give details of names or times and dates.
I left Hungary over one year ago. I worked in a secular position and this allowed me to be involved in several Christian groups. The different groups met on a regular basis for worship, Bible study, fellowship and the breaking of bread. The incredible presence of the Holy Spirit as we worshiped was just amazing! Being a pastor was my main calling and I worked alongside some truly great men and women of God. I preached, counseled the lonely and depressed, reached out to the lost, encouraged the brothers and sisters and smuggled in Bibles and Christian literature. I had some tough discussions and presented the Gospel message to people who only know Christ from the Qur’an. At times I was concerned as I knew I could be imprisoned for smuggling in Bibles (in Arabic) or for witnessing. Yet Christ gave me many opportunities to reach Muslims (often several times a day) and I presented the Gospel message in a clear and easy to understand manner.
18 Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. 19 Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”
I apologize for not writing more at this time but my mind is overwhelmed. I returned to Hungary late last night and am praying for the Lord to continue to lead us and show us the way into the future. Your prayers and support are greatly appreciated and if you would like more details or have any questions then please feel free to contact me. I will write again on this topic so keep an eye on our blog for more information.
Twice a month, Kathy, together with the other women from the Church,organises a ladies coffee morning on the first and third Fridays of the month. The first Friday is a time of outreach where ladies get together to drink coffee, do handcrafts, discuss family and relationship matters etc. The ladies are intentional about inviting women who are either on the fringes of the church group or women who are just interested in a more active social life. They have been blessed to see a neighbour to one of the fellowship member’s come along. Please pray for the other ladies they invite (friends, neighbours, colleagues).
The second coffee morning is a time of prayer. This is for the ladies in the fellowship who know Christ as their Saviour.The ladies use this as an opportunity to worship Christ and to support one another. They pray for the local church group, the individuals and families involved and for the mission work we are all involved in. Though this fellowship is small it is truly blessed to have so many women who love God, His church and their families!
It was lovely to have Katie from Budapest and Lynette from Bratislava join us this Friday.
Over the last few weeks we have collected bags of clothes for the kids in the children’s home in Győr. On the 26th of August Zsuzsi and I are going in to give the clothes.
As school is about to start soon (1Sept.) the children in the home need school supplies. We are hoping to buy exercise books, pens,pencils and etc. If you feel you would like to help us in this work let us know.
And from the start of the school year I (Kathy) will also be helping the kids with their English. Please pray that I can talk to the kids about the Lord and His love as I get to know them.
Please also pray for our family for health and a good start of the new school year.