Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Building Bridges . . .

Coco is building bridges. She's the one with the glasses in this selfie of her team. She's building a bridge towards the future by investing in these Romany youth. The young man on the right recently took the major step of being baptized.
Start Games

Together, they're building bridges to a small Romany village in southern Romania. They've visited homes there to personally invite parents with young children to a Parent-Child Club and to invite children to a once-a-week Bible club.
Once a week, she and her team of Romany youth travel an hour or so to a village in Romania. They're using Davar: Bridging to Literacy materials in these back-to-back gatherings.

They're building bridges to Jesus Christ as well. Remus, one of the team members, speaks the local version of Romani fluently.

Remus speaks in Romani
He used materials from the Wycliffe/SIL Roma Service Team to tell the story of Jesus' death and resurrection.

Everyone's interested in following along.
Several of the listeners have already prayed to receive the new life Jesus offers. 

Want to join Coco's team, too? She could use all kinds of support, beginning with regular prayer.
Want to build bridges in your own community? Let us know if Davar is a helpful tool (http://davar-education.eu/).

Monday, November 7, 2016

Coordinating Resources . . . Cooperating Baptists . . .

Students from a previous session of Gypsy Smith School
This week makes the seventh time that Dutch Baptists flown to Romanian to teach at for the Gypsy Smith School in Bucharest.*   Fellow CBF team members started this training school for Romany pastors and church leaders. The school meets four times a year for one-week intensive training.

Romany church leaders in Romania . . . field personnel from America . . . pastors from the Netherlands . . . how did that all get linked together? Well, we flew to the Netherlands 20 years ago to serve as resource coordinators for CBF's Romany Team. The day after our arrival, Dutch pastor Teun van de Leer came to visit us at the youth hostel in Arnhem where we were staying. He arranged English translation for our first visit to the Arnhem-Centrum Baptist Church the following Sunday. We are still part of that church. In fact, Mary is now one of the English translators.

Teun later moved on to serve as rector and professor at the Dutch Baptist Seminary. About eight years ago, when he was guest speaker at Arnhem-Centrum, we asked him if he knew of anyone who would be willing to teach a one-week session at the Gypsy Smith School in Bucharest, Romania. Well, yes, the seminary was looking for some hands-on mission experiences for students. A student and a professor might go together. Yes, that might work.

We resource coordinators do not have the fun of teaching these enthusiastic Romany believers ourselves. But it gives us great satisfaction to link people who have those teaching skills with leaders eager to learn; to see Christians cooperating across national, ethnic, and linguistic lines to advance the Kingdom.

To read about a previous trip, go to: Dutch Connection.
English translation available.
*The school is named for Rodney "Gipsy" Smith (1860-1947), a British Rom who preached around the world.

Thursday, November 3, 2016

Something New--Going . . . Together

Last time we went to the Republic of Moldova we didn't just help organize activities in the Romany village of Vulcanesti. We helped believers in that village organize an activity in another Romany village.

The kids sang songs.

They did a skit 
illustrating the parable of the Lost Coin.

Musicians shared their own compositions.

And our hosts in the second village shared hot tea, soft drinks and snacks.

Going with people we usually ministry with to another place to do ministry together was something new for us. It's the sort of journey that's well worth repeating.