It is a joy this week to be involved in teaching three leaders who God is calling into deeper service. Philip, Sarah and Sylvia are all studying towards ordination. This week they are studying the history of Methodism and a number of the key figures such as John and Charles Wesley, B.T. Roberts and George Whitfield. They are also studying theology such as entire sanctification, Wesleyan quadrilateral and the order of salvation.
Next week I will travel to Russia (name of the city withheld to protect our leaders), to teach this course again to three leaders there who are also exploring how God may want them to serve. I appreciate your prayers as I prepare.
We had a wonderful service yesterday. The Lutheran church were very kind and allowed us to use their temple which has a baptismal font. With forty people in attendance we celebrated four baptisms and one new local ministerial candidate. Bianka, Eszter, Katica and Klaudia all made that public confirmation of their faith as they were baptised. Sylvia became a local ministerial candidate which means she is exploring the possibility of ordination in the future.
For me it was very exciting! To see such fruit all at the same time was a wonderful blessing. Kathy and I have been blessed to devote many years in service in Hungary and across Europe and to see these commitments was amazing! We believe that our fellowship in Győr will continue to grow and that many more will come to Christ in the coming years. Please pray with us for these five women of God!
Of course, with such joy a little sadness is often found. Our dear friend, Lucas Santana is returning to Brazil after nearly two years in Győr as a University student. He gained his Master degree in engineering and will return home to be with his family. Lucas played guitar for our worship team and we will sorely miss his leadership, friendship and gentle spirit!
We had a wonderful trip to England recently. We greatly enjoyed the Free Methodist Church UK Annual conference which was held in Preston. It was a joy to connect with so many great leaders and we really enjoyed the preaching and testimonies. God is doing a wonderful work and we were glad to hear a little of what is going on in the UK.
I also spoke on Sunday evening at the Garstang Free Methodist Church. Approximately 70 people were present and I spoke on missions in Europe, with a particular emphasis on Hungary and Ukraine. The Lord is really expanding the work before us and we are trusting Him to see many souls saved all across Europe!
Afterwards, we enjoyed two days of rest together. We enjoyed walking, shopping, talking, fish and chips and a break from ministry! Lancanshire and Cumbria are just beautiful!
We enter a new and exciting period of ministry as a new family will join us in Győr. On Monday the Anderson family will fly into Budapest from America and will begin to minister alongside us. We are excited for this new partnership! Please pray for the Anderson family as they adjust to life in Hungary and for us to be good friends/colleagues and to help them as well as we can.
I had a wonderful weekend in Garstang, Lancanshire in England. I went to visit the Garstang Free Methodist church and talk a little about the wonderful ministry currently going on in Rivne, Ukraine. Garstang sent a team in June of 2017 and together we worked with soldiers and their families. You may remember that these soldiers were/are suffering from PTSD and the Garstang team specifically worked with their children in a type of vacation Bible school format.
Former missionary to Ukraine, Pete Blundell, has done an incredible job of informing the Garstang church of this important ministry and is the driving force behind this wonderful connection between Garstang, UK and Rivne, Ukraine. I did speak about the camp this past summer and I also spent a lot if time speaking about our drug rehabilitation centre in Rivne. I look forward to this partnership growing and many coming to know Christ as their Saviour through this exciting work.
Personally I enjoyed fish and chips, scones, long conversations with friends old and new and some rather beautiful landscape! I hope I get to return again in the not too distant future.
I am excited to tell you about an event that is in the planning for 2018. The Northern Europe Prayer Journey will be an opportunity for any interested parties to find out more about the work of the Free Methodist Church in the countries of Belgium, France and Hungary, with visits to each of the aforementioned countries. There is also a possibility of visiting the UK and finding out more about the roots of Methodism. With visits to Brussels, Budapest, London and Paris (along with visits to Bruges, Oostende and Gyor) this will be an incredibly exciting and immersive experience.
If you are interested in what the Lord is doing in Europe then this journey may be for you! Click on the link below for further details.
This week I am blessed to be involved in a week of study. John Fraser (a Free Methodist ordained minister) is teaching a course ‘Introduction to Wesleyan Theology’. Six students are taking this class towards ordination, while several others (myself included) are auditing the course.Several countries are represented, Canada, England, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Romania, Spain, UK and USA. The Free Methodist church in Budapest are very kindly hosting is this week. Please be in prayer for John as he teaches and all those who are learning.
I was privileged last week to enjoy co-teaching a course on Free Methodist history and polity with my colleague and friend Larry Winckles. With people representing Greece, Hungary, Romania and Spain it was a wonderful, multicultural week.
The youngest participant was 19 and the oldest was 73! Yet all contributed in a meaningful way and many friendships were built that will last into eternity. Many of those involved are ministerial candidates and are considering ordination in the future.
With Church history, policies and procedures, theological distinctives and ethical case studies, the week was jam packed! We did however find time to enjoy walks in Budapest, good food and an evening of board games! Please pray for these men and women as they minister in their communities!
Over the past two days we have been blessed to host Eric and Kari Perry from Michigan, USA. Eric is a Free Methodist Pastor and he and Kari are currently in Hungary sharing their personal stories.
Their story is one of both terrible loss and wonderful joy. They spoke honestly and openly. In Gyõr the spoke at two of our groups (adult Bible study and University Bible study). Tears flowed and our translators struggled to translate as they cried. Yet we also laughed and found our hope in Christ renewed!
On Saturday (October 15th) they will speak in Budapest at 5pm and you are welcome to visit. The address is as follows: 1113 Budapest, Villányi út 44.
The following video is a report from the team that recently joined us in ministry at the orphanage in Győr where we serve on a weekly basis. The team were with us in Hungary for nine days and served at the orphanage for five days. I hope you find the video interesting and informative!
This past weekend I had the pleasure of visiting two churches in Belgium. The photos above are from a Free Methodist Church that meets in Brussels. The congregation which is led by Pastor Simeon is made up of Africans who now call Brussels home.
I was able to meet with church leaders, preach and plan for the future with them. Please pray for this group of believers as they reach out to their local community. They have a very dynamic youth group that meets after worship on Sunday mornings!
On Saturday I traveled to Oostende where I spent time with a Free Methodist group which is made of Africans, Belgians and Latinos. Please pray for Pastors Jackie and Lawrence as they give leadership to this group.