Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Men Who Dare

These are the men who dared slog through the mud to attend church in the Romany village of Vulcanesti, Moldova. There were slightly more women on this muddy afternoon, but let's take a look at these men of God.
Far left:  Pastor Petru Ciochina. Next to him:  Grecia (George), one of the long-term church members. He married a Romany woman and raised his children in this Romany village. A hard worker who would prefer to work at home, but he cannot find work in Moldova. He had returned from working in Russia just a while before.
The man in the glasses was the first to come. He listened attentively. The tall young man next to him is Mecrie. He and his wife decided to follow Jesus last year after the birth of their son Ruslan. His wife Ana was not there that evening. She was in the capital, Chisenau, in a medical facility with Ruslan. Ruslan has scarecely been home since his birth. Doctors in Moldova are unable to diagnose why the baby cannot lift his head, can hardly breath on his own, and does not seem to be developing normally. But no matter what the future holds for his young son, Mecric is determined to continue following Jesus.
Walter, the young man in the cap, is also a father. He comes faithfully to church even though his wife does not. He has helped out with summer day camp programs for the village church.
Vania, the one with the guitar, has helped out, too. He grew up in the church (son of Grecia). In fact, this winter the church is meeting in a spare room of their house. He is a graduate from the Moldovan Bible College.
Other men from the church are out of the country, mostly in Russia. They have had to go there to earn enough to feed their families. They continue to be in fellowship with the pastor and with one another through the very electronic medium that allows you to read about them. Russian-language facebook, mobile phones, and Skype chats as well as calls help keep the brothers connected with each other, and have just now connected them with you, too.

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