Archive for Cooperative Program

In the waiting time

Life has continued to be very busy, but in the midst of it all there are still moments when things slow down a bit….when it seems we are doing nothing, only waiting. But God is in those times, too, and often has a purpose to accomplish.

On my way back home from taking care of some business, I plopped myself down on a bus stop bench to catch my breath while waiting for the #22 to arrive.  An older gentleman took the place next to mine, and we exchanged a polite greeting…I searched in my mind for how to continue the conversation. As it was already past the bus’s scheduled arrival time, I commented that it looked like it was going to be rather late.  He laughed and said the bus is often late, but that’s OK since it would give us time to talk. Apparently we were both looking for a chat!

Finding a listening ear in a total stranger, the man poured his heart out to me about the pain and difficulties of life; he told me of the hopelessness he felt in the face of daily visits to his wife, who lay in an institution lost in a haze of dementia.  Frustrated about the state of things in his country, many times he had dreamed of leaving in search of happier times elsewhere. “But how could I leave my wife here lying in her bed. She really wouldn’t know I was gone since she doesn’t recognize me any more…but I still know who she is and I can’t leave her.”

I shared of the hope we can find in God even in dark times, and he said that he had tried churches, had visited several places and come away empty. Only one was mentioned by name, the Jehovah’s Witnesses. Sadly enough that’s not the only religious meeting place where the Good News is lacking. I shared with him that unfortunately not everyone is preaching truth, but that we can know God from His Word, the Bible.

There was a lot more to say, more listening to be done, but suddenly the bus arrived and the conversation was over. Praise God for how He uses “chance” encounters to sow Gospel seeds…and pray for this gentleman, that he will soon find hope and new life in Christ!

Thank you to those who give through the Lottie Moon Christmas Offering and the Cooperative Program, allowing us to be here in Hungary sharing Christ. Your offerings also paid for our language studies, making possible countless encounters with people who have limited or no knowledge of English. We are grateful.

Brown family newsletter August 2015

Dear Friends and Family,

We are witnessing one of the largest refugee movements Europe has seen since World War II. Governments and politicians are seeking solutions to this crisis, but there is no agreement as to what should be done beyond providing humanitarian assistance and granting asylum. As you have probably seen in the media, Hungary is in the eye of the storm as they attempt to secure their border with Serbia and register all immigrants entering the European Union, which is understood in the Schengen Agreement.

While governments and politicians work through issues and solutions, there are ordinary citizens — especially believers and churches — who are greeting refugees as they enter cities and congregate at transit service centers, train stations and parks with bottles of water, food, toiletries, medical services, clothes, diapers, etc.

If anyone is interested in serving and caring for refugees coming through Budapest, we’ll be glad to talk and explore ways to serve. Gary Miller, our team strategy leader, can also be contacted; Gary has contacts with various groups and agencies working with refugees coming through Hungary. Contact Gary through the contact form on the Heart for Hungary webpage. 

Baptist Global Response is helping refugees displaced by the Syria conflict; you can learn more at: https://gobgr.org/news/news_detail/help-and-hope-for-syrian-refugees

Please pray for the refugee crisis, for European governments and peoples to respond with compassion and understanding. Pray for wisdom and discernment in knowing the best ways to help asylum seekers and how to resolve the causes of this massive migration.

Moreover, this is a huge opportunity for the gospel to be shared among people who may not have had access to it before. Pray that churches and believers will lovingly serve and care for refugees in the name of Christ and intentionally, boldly, clearly tell the gospel and invite refugees to believe, repent and follow Jesus.

Attached is our family’s newsletter for August. (Download here.) Please forward and share with your church, Sunday school class, Bible study and missions group and others.

As always, we are grateful for your prayers and the faithful support Southern Baptist churches give to the Cooperative Program and generous gifts to the Lottie Moon Christmas Offering. You make it possible for us to serve as Christ’s ambassadors here.

May grace and peace be multiplied to you. I Peter 1:2

Ron and Robin

Catch-up time

Whew–it’s good to be home again after being out and about a lot over the past two months!  We’ve had a great time, both in ministry, training conferences, in meetings with team members and ministry partners, and also in precious days with visiting family members.  Now we are busy looking through emails and catching up on to-do list items.

Please pray with us:

  • Gary’s mom has started chemo treatments, and she, Dad, and all the family appreciate prayers very much.
  • Lift up Curtis Smith, who is here right now teaching about container gardening.  Ask for many opportunities for him to share his faith as well as assisting people to know how best to grow food for their families.
  • Lift up a national believer and friend who is in urgent need of a new job that will pay enough that he can reunite his family.  He is currently working long days, 6 days/week, but it is not enough to support the family.
  • Pray for the twice-a-month Wednesday night discipleship group members to live out what they are learning & to pass on the lessons to others, as well as sharing Jesus with lost friends and family members.
  • Ask for wisdom for us re: the brand new discipleship group started on the alternate Wednesday evenings; should we keep it on this night, or change to Sunday evenings – ?  Pray this small group will grow both in numbers and in spiritual understanding.
  • Pray for the Tiszafüred church plant to be encouraged and move forward in spiritual growth, obedience and outreach.  Ask that the lost friends coming will soon become followers of Jesus.
  • Every day we are seeing new opportunities for ministry open up, and we need wisdom from the Lord as to which things to do, which things to pass on to others, and which things to say “no” to.  This is very hard!
  • Lift us up, as we are feeling very tired, that we would live each day in the grace He gives: “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” (2 Cor. 12:9)

We appreciate your prayers very much!   Also a huge “thank you” to those of you who give to support missions around the world through the Cooperative Program and the Lottie Moon Christmas Offering.

Carolyn with Danny, Nicole and Clara
Carolyn in the botanical gardens in Debrecen with our son Danny, his wife Nicole & little Clara

Paula and Erik visit Tiszafured
Carolyn’s sister Paula & bro-in-law Erik visit at the church plant

Praying for Europe, and thank you

Map of Europe – OpenClipArt.org

The Lord is doing incredible things here in Hungary and all throughout Europe, but whenever God is working, there are also opposition and difficulties…a spiritual battle is going on for the hearts of the people. Prayer is key in all that we do, and we ask for your help.  Please join us in praying daily for the people of Europe!  

The personnel in our area are currently praying together using a special forty-day prayer guide; each day has a short Scripture verse tied to a one-sentence prayer…if you would like to join us, download it from my Google Docs here.

Thank you so much for your prayer support, as well as your sacrificial giving through the Cooperative Program and the Lottie Moon Christmas Offering.  We appreciate all of you who pray, give, and come to help.  If you are interested in the possibility of coming as a short-term volunteer, please contact us for details.

To those who give through the Lottie Moon Christmas Offering…a special “Thank you” from IMB workers in Europe:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=–wdY4nVlpU

More about what God is doing in Europe & how you can pray:  http://europeanpeoples.imb.org