Jun 2013

VBS UPDATE

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We’re already to day four of our 2013 Vacation Bible School. As we gathered together for registration outside of our local community center the first day, the skies were completely overcast and it surely looked as if rain was on its way. God was gracious to keep the rain away the entire day which allowed us to use the campgrounds as planned. Praise God!

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Above: Even preschool kids are able to recite the verses we are learning each day in class. This is Jennifer’s (above blue shirt) first time leading a small group! Jennifer along with a number of other workers have gone from being visiting parents or campers in the past to growing believers serving in their giftings.

Edit (far left in picture) is a grandmother who has been joining her kids for VBS for the past few years. She has been asking more questions this year about who we are and how to become a part of what we’re a part of. She commented on how amazed she was at the peace she senses in all the camp workers. Erika and Timi have had time to talk with Edit and we ask you to pray for her to come to know Jesus as her Lord and Savior.

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Above: Praise God that even on the first day, kids in their small groups were developing good relationships with each other. Those campers who are with us for the first time also seemed to quickly fit in. There didn't seem to be any kids wandering about and feeling left out.

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Above: Marcsi (far left blue shirt) became sick at the end of the day yesterday. Please pray for complete healing and strength as she manages the work in the camp’s kitchen this year.

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Above: As we get past the midway point in camp, we are beginning to have a few disciplinary issues with kids. This young girl’s feelings were hurt as another group of boys began calling her names. Please pray as Dezso and I sit down and talk with a few of the kids about these issues tomorrow. Please pray for unity among the kids and God’s love to touch each one of them at our camp.

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We would appreciate prayer for our last days of camp. We need stamina both spiritually and physically. On Saturday, we have invited parents to attend which opens up more opportunities to reach out to entire families. Please continue to pray!
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WEEKLY UPDATE

VBS BEGINS TOMORROW!



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Above: Lots of cutting and assembling as we prepare for a record 98 kids for our VBS starting on Monday! We’re so thankful for a core group of church members that have taken ownership of this ministry and are serving with joyful hearts.

The Scripture that comes to my heart when I think about this VBS is found in Isaiah 61:1-4.

“The Spirit of the Lord GOD is upon me, because the LORD has anointed me to bring good news to the poor; he has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to those who are bound;  to proclaim the year of the LORD's favor, and the day of vengeance of our God; to comfort all who mourn;  to grant to those who mourn in Zion— to give them a beautiful headdress instead of ashes, the oil of gladness instead of mourning, the garment of praise instead of a faint spirit; that they may be called oaks of righteousness, the planting of the LORD, that he may be glorified.  They shall build up the ancient ruins; they shall raise up the former devastations; they shall repair the ruined cities, the devastations of many generations.”

The children attending this camp this week come from devastated homes, affected with generation after generation of living lives without God. I know that our God has anointed us by His Spirit to bring good news to these children He so highly cherishes. He is moving in His grace to bring repair, to raise up former devastations of many generations through this ministry!

Of course the opposite is true about our enemy the devil who continues to steal and kill and destroy. We really need your prayers as we are under attack on various fronts to take our attention away from our privileged calling. Please stand with us in prayer and pray for our large team of workers serving together and their families and also the 98 kids attending each day. Here are some things you can pray about:

• First day registration process
• First time kids to have peace and not fear and anxiety.
• Good forming of relationships in small groups with kids and teachers.
• For teachers, worship team, drama team
• For clear declaration of the Gospel.
• For protection from injury especially at free time.
• For protection from sickness and provision of strength.

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Above: Miki and Erika’s daughter Anna practicing this year’s songs with us as we prepped for camp last week.

Family Shots



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Above: Our family took a day out to Holloko last week to check out the traditional town and restored castle.

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WEEKLY UPDATE

Bogács Update



Parking on the outskirts of multiple houses squeezed together next to winding dirt roads, I walked to Pulyka's house for tonight's Bible study in Bogács. I was greeted outside by Izabella and her children and also Mazsi (Pukadur's wife). Surprisingly, Mazsi immediately said to me, "Szeretnék megtérni" (I want to be saved). I praised God in my heart and knew that Izabella must have been talking to Mazsi through the week. I told Mazsi, "That's great, but lets study the word together first. Then I'd like to explain what it means to put our faith in Jesus Christ."

As I entered their house, I found Pulyka (the father) sitting on his couch distraught with his wife in the adjoining room watching TV. Pulyka began intentionally talking so that his wife could hear, and complained about the state of their marriage and their relationship. Soon after his wife walked in and they continued to throw accusations back and forth looking to me to somehow justify one of their arguments. I'm not one to raise my voice when I talk, but I believe God led me in this situation to do just that. It fits well in the Romani culture and is not seen as negative, but as a positive type of passion in communication. I told both Pulyka and his wife that I did not come to solve their marriage problems because I couldn't. But I know that Jesus can. I told them that judgment was coming and that God was not going to ask them their feelings about their spouse at the time of judgment. They would be held accountable for their own sins. I encouraged them to stop judging one another but to consider that individually, they each were in sin and needed to be saved. The good news is that there is provision for forgiveness and reconciliation with God through Jesus Christ! I was encouraged to see Pulyka's daughter Izabella jumping in and reexplained what I was conveying to her mother and father. "Don't you see, you need to be saved!" After more of the family showed up, we began our Bible study on the seed of God's word falling on various kinds of soil.

At the end of our study, I asked if Mazsi still wanted to repent and put her faith in Jesus Christ. Both Mazsi and Izabella said, "Yes!" Ödön and Pukadur said they were not ready, but are definitely heading the right direction. I spent some time explaining the Gospel and the meaning of repentance and faith in Jesus. Afterwards, Mazsi and Izabella prayed, putting their faith in Jesus Christ as their personal Lord and Savior in the presence of the rest of the family!

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Above L to R: Izabella, Krisztian, Pukadur and Mazsi.

Before returning home, God led me to pray for healing for family members. I prayed first for Pulyka who suffered from a knee problem and pain in his leg. After laying my hands on him and praying, I asked him to stand up and try out his leg. He began smiling and saying to his family, "The pain is gone!" Mazsi then asked for prayer. She and her husband Pukadur have been having problems having a second child even after seeing specialists. I asked Jesus to heal her and to open her womb and to bless them with another child. I'll have to wait for confirmation of healing. Next, Krisztian (I think he is Izabella's little brother) asked for prayer for a back problem he has had for years. Laying my hands on his back, I began praying and also proclaiming the Gospel in my prayers. Krisztian began laughing and I thought it was nervous laughter as he kept his eyes open and was looking at his family while I prayed. But then he said to his family, "It's like electricity all through my back!" I asked him how he was doing. "The pain is gone. Thank you!" I told him that I can't heal, but it was Jesus Christ and to give thanks to Him. I praise God for these works of grace freely given in His love. Our Father "makes his sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust." (Mat 5:45) God doesn't desire "that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance." (2 Peter 3:9). As Jesus continues to reveal Himself to this family, through His word, through deliverance and through healing may His grace lead the entire household to repentance and belief in the only Mediator between God and men, Jesus Christ. (1 Tim 2:5)

Izabella told me of her past week where her child was so sick that she was about to take him to the emergency room. She turned to Jesus remembering how He delivered her from evil spirits and prayed for her child in tears. The next morning her child was well after being sick for days and medicine not helping. Izabella told me that she also began sharing what happened to her with others at the market. She told me most of them laugh at her. I encouraged her that their response didn't matter, but that God is honored as we share with others what Jesus has done in our lives. Before leaving I encouraged Izabella and Mazsi to read the Scripture throughout the week. Izabella said enthusiastically, "We have already begun reading it together. We see each other every day!" God's kingdom has come to Bogács. Join us in praising God for these lost women who have found salvation through Jesus Christ.

MINORS’ DAY PETOFIBANYA



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Every summer, our home town of Petofibanya opens the mines back up for tours and holds various entertainment for the community. Once again we were invited to participate with face painting and crate climbing. This allows us to meet more and more in the community and to invite kids to our upcoming VBS which is just weeks away!

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Above: Erika sitting with Lotti. Lotti has been meeting with Erika over the past few weeks learning about Jesus Christ. Please pray that Erika would have wisdom when meeting and for this young woman to come to be saved by God’s grace.

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VBS JUST WEEKS AWAY



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Above: Photo from 2012’s VBS.

We’re just two weeks out from our VBS and already have over 60 kids registered. We expect over eighty kids and are busy finishing the development of teaching materials needed for camp. Please pray for wisdom and unity for our team. We would also appreciate your prayers for these kids, the majority coming from homes that do not know Jesus Christ. Pray especially for Robin, a young boy that I’ve begun meeting with for counseling. Robin is adopted and his parents have recently divorced. He has begun behaving terribly and his mother approached me seeking for help as everything she has tried has failed. I told her that Jesus is the only one who can help, and I would be glad to meet with him. Robin has attended our VBS for the past years and goes to the same school as my children. Our first meeting on Friday was positive. Please pray for healing in his heart and for him to know Jesus Christ and His love.

Other news



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Above: Kira, Ziva, Emily Woo and Elianna.

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Above: Teammate Roger with Zsolti. Zsolti and his wife Vincse have been hosting a new Bible study in the town of Apc for the past month. We were invited to their house for their son’s birthday party.

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Above: Béla, one of the oldest members of our church (72).

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Above: Zsolti’s son Feri celebrating his 11th birthday. Teammate Heidi Woo was kind enough to bake a delicious cake. We were told by Zsolti that this would be his first time having a birthday cake. Zsolti and Vincse struggle to make ends meet and have spent years past with no running water and no electricity. God has been bringing help to them spiritually and practically in their lives over the past few months. He has restored their electricity and also their water just last week.

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Above: Ziva learning how to color (or eating crayons?).
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