Hello Family and Friends,
The team has returned to Budapest and continued to engage in ministry. The train ride from Romania to Hungary allowed us to share stories about the name of Jesus and maximize our last day of ministry.
Many of the students mentioned wanting to do one more drama, and we had the opportunity to go to a correctional facility. We were able to let the gospel shine in this place, knowing our time here is coming to a close for now. The team sought out one more place and found the Budapest Eye (Giant Ferris Wheel in Deak Ter) and a large crowd of people. The students poured their hearts into engaging with the drama one last time with so many people from different nations in this place. We know the name of Jesus reigns here as the seeds planted will one day reap a harvest.
The team will spend our last day in Budapest seeing the sites and preparing to make the trip back home. Your prayers have been invaluable, and we cannot wait to tell you the great things Jesus has done!
--Team Eastern Europe Leadership
Team Eastern Europe woke up this morning again to a hot breakfast at the Charis House followed by time in worship, teaching, and prayer. The team has been learning about walking in the power and favor of the Lord. We set out with gusto—ready to push back darkness for the glory of God.
Arriving at Oradea, we were able to use a different tool to evangelize: street evangelism. Many deep conversations with people began with the simple action of giving them a “cadou.” We learned the word “Cadou,” which means “gift” in Romanian, so we could tell people that the tracts that we gave out are gifts for them.
After we walked the streets of Oradea, we had the opportunity to do the drama at an orphanage. As soon as we climbed out of the bus, we could feel an instant connection with the children. After dancing with them for a few songs, the team did the drama. The children's attention was captured. One of the team members got to talk to a girl who poured out her heart about how her best friend had passed away a while ago and many other things. She said she knew that God loved her, but she didn’t think Jesus was with her. She seemed hopeful that the gospel would be true and almost decided to accept Christ. She is so close. We are thankful that seeds were planted, so please pray for her and all of the other children with whom we were able to engage. We ended our time there with music and a time of playing soccer.
After a full day of ministry, Team Eastern Europe came back to where we are staying. The Charis House brings hospitality, refreshing scenery, homemade meals and a heart to serve the Lord together. Our giant tiny family seems to be stretched across the world as we meet more and more brothers and sisters in Christ.
Thank you for your prayers! We have one more official day of drama ministry before we prepare to head home. Please be praying for miracles to happen tomorrow!
--Eastern Europe Leadership
Waking up this morning in Romania was filled with blessings and community as we continued to meet with the workers of the Charis House. The team was encouraged by going to church this morning and worshipping with brothers and sisters in Christ while engaging in a new language. These students have learned some Hungarian and Slovak, and now Romanian, as they keep saying "thank you" in different languages!
The team is traveling to a gypsy camp outside Oradea this evening and has prayed over the bondage we may face in this place. As we traveled here, we came worshipping the Lord in our travels. As we arrived in Telechiu, the small building was quickly filled with women, children, and men as the team began to sing songs. In Pécs, our Hungarian contact, Bella, taught our team "I Have Decided to Follow Jesus" in Romanian. As the team sang the first phrase, all voices were heard in unison declaring Jesus together.
Even as we shared the drama, the Lord brought the people who needed to hear. Two men accepted Christ tonight and now have new life! The team celebrated these salvations together in awe of what God has done! Even some of our ladies tonight were able to fellowship with the older ladies and bring encouragement. God heard our prayers. We have been so encouraged and in awe of what He has done!
Tomorrow, we continue to minister in Oradea, and we look forward to sharing about the great things God has done!!
Until all hear,
—Eastern Europe Leadership
Good Evening, Family and Friends!
#TeamEasternEurope has traveled across the country today to Oradea, Romania! Not only did the team wake up in Pécs, Hungary, but we are now are settling in Romania after a full day of traveling by train.
Tomorrow, the team is attending church and will be engaging with a gypsy community tomorrow as well. We are excited about staying here at the Charis House in Romania, and the people here have extended such encouraging hospitality. Thank you for your prayers, and we look forward to sharing more!
Until all hear--
—Eastern Europe Leadership
Because the rain from yesterday was gone, the streets of Pécs were bustling with people as Team Eastern Europe headed out to do ministry today.
The Lord had so many divine encounters in store for us. At a park where we did our first drama, one of the students had just sat down on a bench as an elderly lady who spoke English came and sat next to her; this led to such an encouraging conversation. At the same time, another group of students was talking to a deist. They got to show Christ’s love to him and ask some good questions to lead him closer to the truth.
At our next drama site, God did something miraculous. Yesterday, a group of our students had talked to a woman in a purple shirt and a man who had come to Pécs to stay with family but ended up on the streets. The students led the woman to the Lord, but the man seemed resistant to the gospel.
Before we left, our translator was able to tell them about a few places that could help. Today, we saw the same lady in the purple shirt again! She was bursting with joy when she saw us! She could not wait to tell us that 30 minutes after we left, the man found a job, somebody offered them a cheap place to say, and somebody else did their laundry for them. The Lord provided for their needs. God is faithful!
As the team headed back home, we stopped to get fagy (ice cream), and sitting on the bench across from us was the same man from yesterday! We got to show him Christ’s love and give him some fagy . God let us see His work come full circle.
Besides these crazy miracles, one of the sweets moments of today was dinner time. Music floated through the air as the team gathered to eat garlic bread and spaghetti. We all felt like family whether we were passing the garlic butter around, singing worship music or washing dishes. This reminded us of earlier today when one student said that he was so thankful for our "giant tiny family."
We push back darkness together every day. We celebrate victories together every day.
We eat together every day. We worship and pray and laugh and read Scripture together every day. We really are a "giant tiny family."
Thank you all for your prayers. Please be praying for our travel to Romania tomorrow. We cannot wait to see what divine encounters God has in store for us!
—Team Eastern Europe Leadership
What a full day of ministry the team has experienced today! From the beginning of the day to where we are now, only God could have done such great things!
This morning, the team stepped into action, growing stronger in worship together here at the hotel with windows open and hearts singing. Even though it was raining in the city, the opportunities nearby began to fall into place. Buildings all around us in Europe have several stories of decorative walls and windows, and we are thankful for this for many people opened their windows to hear the greatest news of all. The students pray for rain to come during drama ministry as they love to display the gospel through this, wanting people to be transformed by what Christ has done at the cross. Several times today, the team experienced God placing people who needed to hear the gospel at bus stops, parking garages, and even in shops in the local mall where we ate our lunch.
The team began to prayerwalk and engage people in the mall here in Pécs. We gathered together to hear stories of their divine encounters, but the team ultimately asked for more time to pass out tracts. Our team's desire to engage in this place has been contagious to those around us, as several in conversation today have been attracted to the beauty of the gospel. Hungarian businesses prohibit religious topics from being discussed publicly, but security guards remained in their places as the team traveled throughout the mall. God had a purpose in sending us to a place where many would not share Jesus. We saw person after person begin discussions about who Jesus is, and the seeds planted today have been bountiful.
Large public squares abound in cities and towns throughout Europe, and the team entered into a place today where the seeking souls were evident. We have seen people walk away at the sound of the name of Jesus, but today, we saw many people stay and listen. We know divine encounters were awaiting us today in this place as Muslims, church people and even those who have been hurt by the church were present in this place. Ministry has been plentiful and so encouraging as the team began to ask deeper questions about who they say Jesus is.
Tonight, the team returned home to worship and experience the presence of the Lord while we grew stronger. As we began praying for one another, we had a visitor come to join us whose name is Agnus. This young woman heard the team earlier this morning worshipping in the hotel before leaving for ministry, and she knew the songs we were singing. Agnus came to simply join us. She encouraged the team by sharing her heart for worship and that she is a coordinator for day camps in Pécs but is leaving tomorrow. As we prayed over her, she prayed for the team, and we left encouraged but blessed as a team that the Spirit of the Lord is moving in this place.
We are praying big prayers and expecting God to move as we have one more day of ministry here in Pécs. Saturday, we leave by train to travel to Oradea, Romania. This is our third country to minister in, and we are stepping into faith, seeking God’s purpose in each place we go.
Thank you for praying, always.
Can’t wait to share more!
—Team Eastern Europe Leadership
(This post was received Wednesday, July 3)
Kaposvár has been home this week as we have been living with our family in Christ. The team traveled to a town nearby to minister to the gypsies of Vése. Gypsies here in Hungary are a community of people that others may try to ignore, but when people are important to God, they are important to us as believers. The team was encouraged by the people here as they were seeking truth and prayer. Many have recently come to know the Lord, and the joy they had in seeing the drama displayed was overwhelming for some of these. These villages usually are quiet and filled with several families, but today, the streets were filled with dancing and the news of the gospel. Itsel, the pastor's wife, told the team that people they have not been able to reach out came into the streets and saw the drama to ultimately hear the gospel. They were so encouraged and excited about the opportunities here!
After lunch, someone asked the students, "How many times have you done the drama?" Several answered with various numbers such as 30, 100s or too many to count. The next question was "How many times have the people of Vése seen the drama?" Once.
As believers, we never know when we share the gospel will be the time God ordained for someone to hear the call in their life. We know in Revelation 3:20 (NIV), Jesus calls out to us, saying, "Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with that person, and they with me." We may share Jesus with someone for a long time, and although we are obedient to share, it is Jesus who saves. This reminder was good to remember as Galatians 6:9 (NLT) says, "Let us not get tired of doing what is good. At just the right time, we will reap a harvest of blessing if we don’t give up."
This afternoon, the team was blessed with an open door at a nursing home in Kaposvár. Our contact had not been able to reach anyone for a while here and wanted to call just one more time. Thankful God is in control, because someone from the nursing home picked up the phone and answered with a yes! The team engaged with the people here and the students were able to share with many who may never hear the gospel again. The ministry here is rich, and we are sad to be leaving this place.
Please join us in prayer for workers over this place as we have seen the need here. Tonight we leave by train for Pécs to continue ministry. Thank you all for keeping up with us and praying for us this summer!
--Eastern Europe Leadership
Crowds of people gathered today around Lake Balaton, the largest lake in Hungary. What better place for Team Eastern Europe to present the gospel?
A man from the United States named James opened up his home for us to have a place to set up camp for the day. James and his wife used to take the “Jesus” film into closed countries to share the gospel and have been in Europe for over two decades. He has a heart that beats the same as ours—we want the whole world to know that Jesus is Lord.
The team did the drama a few times in different places for different people along with walking up and down the shore of the lake, handing out tracts and engaging in prayer and conversation with those we met.
After engaging wholeheartedly in drama ministry, the team was able to have some time to exhale and fellowship. We were able to swim, play some games and eat some Hungarian chili hot dogs!
We are excited to engage with a gypsy community tomorrow as we close our time here in Kaposvár. It is amazing to see how just a few days makes family in Christ to grow closer. We have been not only grateful but inspired by our church family here with Pastor Jury, Itsel and Olag. Please pray that the people hearing the gospel will have open eyes, open minds and open hearts!
—Eastern Europe Leadership
The team has been blessed by a full day of ministry today here in Kaposvár. We have always encouraged the team to always seek out “one more drama” for the day as we want to always do Jesus ministry wherever we may go. This church plant with Golgata not only has committed members every week, but the church plant leaders are such amazing servants and warriors of the faith. Itsel has shown off her wonderful cooking abilities in some traditional Hungarian goulash for the team tonight and has served with such passion. Pastor Jury meets no stranger and works with the other local pastors in this area to reach all types of people groups here in this part of Hungary. We have been encouraged and blessed by their calling here.
The team began today's ministry by the church at the local post office and park, ministering to the people in this area. Sometimes when the team comes to the area, there may be some people in the park or a few walking by, but as the team is faithful to share the good news, God has always provided people coming to watch the drama, for today is the day of salvation; we will rejoice and be glad in it!
Peggy Nunley, president of Awe Star, has joined #TeamEasternEurope this past weekend and taught the team about God giving us a clean heart, a reclaimed wholeness because of God’s work in us. We also celebrated her birthday in Hungary today as she has returned to the country she began serving in with Awe Star. What a celebration this is today seeing how God has provided in all things and is faithful!
Pastor Jury told us about the meaning of the town names we have visited here; even though he is from Serbia, Hungarian is a mother language for his family. Where we have been staying in Kaposvár, "vár" means "castle" and "Kapo" means "river"; thus, we are staying in “River Castle” part of Hungary. The team met with Pastor Benson, another gentleman who works with the gypsies in a local village outside of Kaposvár named Kürtöspuszta. The name of this town means “trumpet in the desert land.” The team felt the call of the trumpet here bringing in the Good News to the people here, fewer than 200 in this village. Tonight, almost half of the town came to see and hear the gospel. Many were seeking prayer and though we see the seeds being planted, we know the Lord is the One who gives salvation.
God is doing an amazing work here in southern Hungary! When we asked the pastors how we can pray for their ministry, they said, “Please pray for conversions of the heart to fill the deeper need of the heart that only Jesus can fill.” Would you join us in praying for Pastor Benson, Pastor Jury and the other pastors in this area as they continue to proclaim the good news of the gospel?
Until all hear,
—Eastern Europe Leadership
It is hard to believe the team is moving from the city to another town. The city of Budapest has been our home for this past week, and we have been in awe of meeting so many people around the world here. The Holy Spirit has filled our conversations and humbled our team as we realized God can speak through any situation and through any person.
The book of Philippians seems to have been brought to us in so many avenues this week. One of our team directors shared Philippians 1:6, "He who began a work in you will bring it to completion" earlier this week, but Jason Teboe from Germany also encouraged the team with Philippians 2:1-16 in reminding us we are called to imitate Christ's humility, and our work is not in vain. What an encouraging time in God's Word as the team continues to walk in unity and seek divine encounters wherever we go.
The Hungarian students: David, Dori and Bugi, have been with us this past week have been so encouraged by the team. As their last day of ministry with the team was Friday night, the team spent some time encouraging them and thanking them for their legacy in joining in the work to share the gospel. The bond these students have shared as family in Christ was inspiring, but the Hungarian students had a surprise for the team before they left ... they had purchased postcards for us with a handwritten message from Philippians 1:3-7.
"I thank my God every time I remember you. In all my prayers for all of you, I always pray with joy because of your partnership in the gospel from the first day until now, being confident in this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus. It is right for me to feel this way about all of you, since I have you in my heart, and whether I am in chains or defending and confirming the gospel, all of you share in God's grace with me."
May you be just as encouraged by this as we have been. We thank you for your prayers! Now on to Kapsovar!
—Eastern Europe Leadership