Kostov Prayer Letter — August 2008
We wanted to write to update you on our house search and ask you
all for prayer. As you know we have been searching for quite
awhile for a suitable living situation in the town of Vidin.
After looking at apartments and realizing that we cannot afford
rent to move into a suitable apartment, we started looking to
buying a property in a nearby village. The thinking here was
that a decent house price and loan would end up less in monthly
mortgage payments than renting a renovated apartment.
Our first find was a very nice village house (selling at $100,
000), but after much struggle and crunching of numbers we’ve
decided that we would need to find something less expensive to
fit our missionary lifestyle. So we did. We have found a house
that needs renovation in a village 10 km from Vidin. The house
is in good condition and we have had it looked over by an expert
building consultant. The cost of the purchase of the property
and the house renovation will total $60,000. Now the “other”
hard part – getting a loan! We have been on a hunt for a loan
for awhile but to no avail. For many reasons banks are hesitant
to lend to us – a main reason being that our income comes from
overseas and/or that we are looking to buy a village house and/
or we have no other collateral to offer them. I’m sure you’ve
all been down this road before and know well the headache of
getting a loan from a bank!
However, we were able to work with Yavor, Vik’s brother, to try
to secure a mortgage against his house. We were able to prepare
the whole paperwork within two days, except one signature of
lien on the property. We thought this signature would not be a
problem since it was Vik’s parents who had to sign the papers.
However, they just refused. Without ovrespiritualizing the
situation we must remain aware of the question – is it God who’s
not blessing this effort or is it the enemy who’s opposing God’s
plan? The answer is, we believe, that the enemy is against our
joining the effort of the ministry in Vidin up close.
We want to ask you for prayer- that funds would be released to
us to purchase this property and finally make the move to Vidin.
Whether the funds come from a bank, personal loan, or fall from
the sky – we are open to all possibilities! We just need God to
move on our behalf because there is only so much we can do
humanly speaking and we are beginning to feel that our hands are
tied. We are waiting to Friday to tell the owner whether or not
we think we can buy the property. May God move before then!
On the youth club front: The first place which we were to rent
went for sale by the owner. So we looked around and have now
rented a small house in the town (Vidin) and have begun
renovations. We had to tear out huge sections of the decor, tile
work and everything out of the bathroom and kitchen. We now have
electricians in working on the wiring. We have a month or so
more of work ahead of us – thank you for your prayers. God is
good and is providing for this work!
On the religious freedom front: There is a new level of
propaganda in certain media against “the sects” (among whom are
evangelical Christians). The people behind such publications are
Orthodox nationalists or are related to the Socialist Party (the
former communists) who still have a strong influence in the
nation’s politics (they control the government now). We expect
that the religious liberty situation may worsen given the fact
that the EU is critical of the Bulgarian government and the
level of corruption and lack of justice in the country. The
communists have proved that whenever the public focuses on the
political problems of their rule, the media comes up with
stories about the “dangerous evangelical sects.” As a reminder:
we had to pull out of our ministry from the two state-run
orphanages due to a change of administration which was
sympathetic to the former communist party and Orthodox
nationalism. Our online blog and magazine activity is increasing
and so are articles denouncing the freedom of religion. Please,
pray as Viktor will be speaking tonight on a new national
strategy of securing the missionary vision of the church through
appealing for freedom of religion and speech and media tolerance.
The speech will be at a gathering of one of the new evangelical
networks in the nation.
Thank you for praying for Vik’s teaching at the church in Vidin
in July and August. We had four weeks of great worship services.
Viktor took a group from the church to a national youth event
(Uzana 2008) where he spoke on the need of the church to engage
in mission and influencing society by guarding freedom of
religion and speech.
We are grateful for your prayers.
Much love, The Kostov Family
A slideshow of the first steps to repairs in the newly rented Youth Club facility
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