Archive for Eastern Hungary Team

Signs of Spring

The end of March brought some really lovely weather to Hungary!  Trees and flowers are coming to life, people are out and about with no more than a light jacket, and we are reminded of how much we have  to be thankful for as we look back over the last months, as well as what’s on our calendar for the days to come.

We’ve been dealing with some illness, so please pray that the Lord will give us strength and energy for each day’s work, and that we will continually be reminded to live in His joy and to share it with others.

“This is the day that the Lord has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it.” Psalm 118:24

Carolyn with spring buds and bushesIn the picture above you can see the blossoms on the tree in our front yard and the neighbor’s flowering bushes across the street. You can also see how the still-cool, gusty wind has turned my selfie into a real….glamour photo!

Conversations that matter

The first full week in March we were blessed to have David Knight with us in Debrecen serving as a volunteer through Bob Hartman International Ministries. David’s had many years of experience pastoring and working with young people, and is currently a PhD student in apologetics. Some things that we’d thought he might do during his time here didn’t come together, but as the days went by we could see that there was a better plan than ours! It’s always exciting to see how the Lord puts things together in ways that we never could on our own.

Debrecen University main building

Debrecen University main building

With David’s background and current studies, it was a very natural thing for him to spend time on the Debrecen University campus meeting students from around the world and dialoguing with them about their belief systems and views on life and God. He found the students very open to talking, and across the week some of them came back for more discussion…bringing friends with them! We’re so thankful for the contacts that were made and the conversations that took place.

We had a wonderful time on Saturday afternoon visiting the English Fellowship, an interdenominational group that meets monthly on campus. David preached, then most of the group stayed to eat and chat. What a blessing to worship and spend time with brothers and sisters from around the world!  (Visit the English Fellowship’s Facebook page.)

 

  • Pray for the young people who took part in important conversations during the week, that God would continue to work in their lives. Ask that the Lord will bring more believers across their paths and open up further opportunities for dialogue.
  • Lift up the English fellowship group, as they will soon be losing access to the facility where they’ve been meeting. Pray that God will guide in what comes next for the ministry, and that He will use this transition to expand the work among the substantial number of English speakers in the community. Ask God to guide and bless as English-language ministries are used to reach further into the lost community.

Gardening outreach training starts new semester

The Spring 2019 semester of the gardening outreach ministry is underway, with classes taking place every other week due to busy schedules. The group is smaller at this point, but we’re encouraged to have a new member from another Debrecen church (previously they’ve all been Debrecen Baptist folks.)  We’re working on getting articles translated and formatted for the training manual; it’s a lot of work, but getting this done is vital to the development of the program. Back-story of the program

This year at our house we’re starting seedlings in homemade seed starter pots…it’s fun to see the little okra, bean and tomato plants develop.  Now many of the seedlings are ready to set out, but the temps are dropping too low at night. Hold on, little garden…spring weather will return!

Pray that as the gardening outreach program continues to develop it will stay true to the vision of using what we learn to reach out to the lost community with the love of Christ.

Gardening outreach update

Ever since the outreach gardening program began last year we’ve been asking for prayer that the Lord would raise up nationals to take over leadership.  Praise God, while the volunteer US horticulture expert Dr. Curtis Smith was in eastern Hungary in January, the very national that we had been thinking would be a good leader volunteered to act as the future coordinator for the program!  Her calendar has opened up and she is willing to begin moving into a leadership position.  She will assist with planning, communication between teachers and program participants, and other duties.  While Dr. Smith was in-country new connections with other churches and interested nationals also developed. 

Praise God for how He has been working!  Pray that He will continue to lead as the program moves into the next stages of its development, that it will maintain the vision of sharing Christ in both word and deed.

Photo of those at gardeners outreach group meeting
Dr. Smith, the Millers, and one of the Hungarian teachers met with some of last year’s participants for feedback and discussion about moving forward with the program

Berekfürdő advent celebration

We had the pleasure of joining the people of Berekfürdő last Sunday as the community gathered to celebrate the opening of the Christmas season.  There was music, some words from the Reformed pastor, cookies baked by local children and sponsors, spiced tea and mulled wine (we had the tea), and the ceremonial lighting of the first candle on the Advent wreath.  The flame was then passed on from person to person among those who brought a candle; children moved through the crowd offering the homemade cookies from wicker baskets.  It’s so hard to not take another…and another…from such cute kids who are politely wishing you a merry Christmas and urging that you take from their basket!

As we move through the coming weeks and to the celebration of Christ’s coming, may we all remember what (or rather Who) it’s all about, and may we share Him with others.

Pray for the people of Berekürdő and the small mission point we are serving with there in partnership with the Karcag Baptist church; ask the Lord to grow the group into a vital, mission-minded church that will reach the community for Christ.

Wishing you all a very blessed Christmas!

Gary & Carolyn

Millers in downtown Debrecen

Gary & Carolyn in downtown Debrecen. In the background the sign over the street says, “Happy Christmas, Debrecen!”