The following are brief reports and requests for your prayerful consideration. (To view photos related to all these activities, please, go to our web album or scroll down to the end of this post to view the slideshow.)
Youth Club Renovations and Vidin Ministry
November. We are almost finished with the renovations of the interior of the Youth Club. We have raised and spent about $7,000 so far. A generous $2,000 gift last month came in right on time so we were able to cover the costs of materials and work of the last phase of repairs plus two computer tables and curtains. In order to open the club we need another $3,000 which will go toward 2 computers, tables, a sofa, video-projector and some decorations, stove and a fridge for the kitchen. At this point we continue to live in Sofia so we traveled to Vidin in November in order to help with church matters and the renovations of the club. Yavor and Acho are doing a great job coordinating the project on the ground.
December 1. Viktor traveled to the Black Sea coast to the city of Burgas for a meeting with several pastors. They discussed a proper legal response for a joint action against a letter of the local city and police which accused evangelicals of destroying national unity and attacked the religious beliefs of Christians.
December 4. We held a round table with about 20 authors (from a total of over 45 authors) from our religious liberty and church-state discussion web site. The subject was the role of the internet in the establishment of a free civil society which respects freedom of religion. It was a time of discussion and fellowship among theologians, lawyers, government officials who had contributed to our web site with articles.
Viktor presented a short report of the history of our publication: this year we have over 110,000 unique visitors to the site, over twice as much as last year. This is without any advertisement and only for the Bulgarian language version of the publication.
December 17. A claim against a certain newspaper and one of their contributing authors who has repeatedly and viciously attacked evangelicals in the media was filed with the Commission for Protection against Discrimination. Viktor helped put together and file the petition which requests that the newspaper and this Orthodox theologian stop the discriminatory and libelous statements against evangelical Christians.
Team Ministry in Churches in Southern Bulgaria
December 6-12. Viktor traveled with Stuart Watkins and Yavor holding services in several towns in Southern Bulgaria – Plovdiv, Assenovgrad, Stara Zagora. The point of the trip was to preach and teach the Word of God and encourage the believers. We re-established some old friendships (Plovdiv) and started some new ones (Assenovgrad, Stara Zagora). God’s Spirit was moving powerfully during the meetings.
God has been faithful and we have met our financial (living budget) goal for the year. However, this month we scored a record – the lowest support month ever in years, enough to cover only rent and part of our bills. We are not concerned, the Lord is a faithful provider, but obviously certain economic realities are hitting home. We want to thank those of you who have shared your financial blessings with us so we can do the ministry we are doing. May God’s generous heart be turned toward you in the coming New Year as well. We are very thankful for all of your prayers and giving.
We just came back from the doctor’s office. The specialist confirmed that all is well with her kidneys and recommended a therapeutic medication for a swifter recovery. However, it was the prayers of the saints that helped her get back to normal within two days during a busy and critical time. Thank you.
Traditionally this year’s Christmas photo, which we mailed to some of you, features the boys again. It is a print quality picture and you can open and/or download it here.
Poly, the youth worker from the Vidin church, and Roza, a young woman who used to live in the orphanage we used to work in, will spend Christmas with us, in Sofia.
Have a great time during this season of celebrating the birth of our Lord, Jesus. As the world is further plunging into crises and darkness our hope is in Him and His unfailing promises.
Love and grace in Christ,
Viktor, Teresa and the boys
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