Friday, July 9, 2010

Jessica's baptism

I know that I'm getting a few things out of order, because I haven't told you about ministry in Western Ukraine. But that is coming, I promise. I just wanted to tell you about something a little more current and then I'll jump back to catching you up. Hope that's fine with you. Jessica has been wanting for a long time to follow Christ's command to be baptized. She came to me one day after reading in her Bible, and asked," Mom, why can't I be baptized?" She has made her choice to follow God and wanted to show her friends and others that she was determined to do just that. We have been talking with her about the real meeaning of baptism. And she has had a lot of good questions. Two weeks ago she was baptized in a small pond just outside our village of Osikova. Here in Ukraine it is the custom to wear only white when getting baptized, as a symbol of being the bride of Christ. Here is Jessica in her white outfit. Our friend, Vita, translated for Jessica so she would understand everything. She had some of her favorite songs sung in Russian. It was truely a special day. It started out as a hot day, but later some cloud cover cooled things off a little.
Jessica thought she was going to be the only one who would be baptized, but at the last minute an old grandma stepped up and said that she wanted to be baptized as well. So it worked out the she was baptized with someone else, even though Jessica was willing to do it alone if she needed to. The old grandma was almost 90 years old.

Here Pastor Roman is Baptizing Jessica in the
Name of the
and Holy Spirit.

Jessica, your Mom and Dad are so proud of you for making the decision to follow God and take this next step with Him. God has great things planned for you if you follow closely to Him.
The wild flowers and roses were given to her to remember this special day. Then everyone in the church had a little picnic by the pond. We pray that Jessica will always remember this day, but more importantly always follow Christ.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Children worker's training conference

The first week in June was just a little packed. After Lana's funeral, we had our first conference for training children workers. Katrina Randolph helped me with some of the work shops. We had a nice group come and some from other churches. We learned together, shared ideas and even practiced to each other. I felt God's help in teaching. Here we are working on applying things we had learned. They had to piece together a theme, verses, Bible stories, and songs for a series.
We want to Thank God for His help and everyone who prayed for us during this conference. It was very needed and I hope what we learned will be used for God's glory in days to come. Tomorrow I'll try to tell you about our two weeks in western Ukraine in the mountains. Keep tuned in for more updates headed your way.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Ukrainian funeral

As I mentioned in my last post, Jason's Bible trip was cut short when his translator, Roman, heard that his sister had died suddenly. Lana was only 40 years old, unmarried and her death came as a shock to the family. She was having problems with blood clots in her legs and one went to her heart. Jason and I had the privilege of being a support and help to the family during their time of loss. In Ukraine, if a girl, no matter her age, dies before she gets married, she will be buried in a wedding dress. So Lana's dress and veil was a symbol that she was single. She looked beautiful.
Jason was the driver for the van carrying the body, and I helped with food, flowers and taking pictures. Here is Pastor Roman, his parents and wife, Nodiea. The funeral was just outside their apartment building, but she was buried in Kenyazachee, and the funeral meal was in Kiev. So a lot of driving and transporting people.

Many came for the service.
Jessica helped in comforting Anyta, Roman's daughter. The kids were very close to their aunt.
Lana was buried right next to Dorthy Pelfery's grave. Dorthy Pelfery was a missionary and died here in Ukraine.
The meal was a big deal and held at a nice restaurant. The food was great, but at a time like this you really don't want to eat much.

The saddest part of the story is that we are not certain that Lana is in heaven today. At one time she had walked with God, but in recent days especially her brother, Roman , had been worried about her commitment to Christ. What a challenge to us. Will people have to wonder where I ended up after I pass on?

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Friends and a Bible trip cut short

We were very happy to hear the Hunts, our friends from CO, were coming to Ukriane. We were even happier that they were able to stay a few days with us. Jason was happy to drive them all the way to southern Ukraine to where they would be helping a Ukrainian family. On their way out of Ukriane they stopped here again and even helped me get some last minute things done for VBS. Kim and Judy were a big help in the kitchen as well. While Jason was in southern Ukraine he wanted to do a Bible trip and visit the family of one of the prisoners in Siberia. Jason, Josh and pastor Roman was able to visit the mother and sister of one of the prisoners in Siberia who is still coming to the Bible study that was started when Jason made a trip up there last year. Of course the mother had a hard time believing that an American saw her son in Siberia and came all the way to see her and bring her a Bible. They were able to pray with her and her daughter. The daughter really needs God in her life. She has pretty much wasted her life on drugs. But God is able to save. The Bible trip was cut short because Roman recieved a phone call that his sister, Lana, had died suddenly. So the rest of the trip was abandoned as Jason hurried to get Roman back to help his parents with the funeral arrangments. In my next post I'll tell all about that.

Monday, July 5, 2010

Street service in Kenyazachee

I am back to blogging. Yea, I know that I'm supposed to be at youth camp at the Black Sea, right now,but I'm not. Josh got sick last night and was throwing up all night (it seemed) and then today I wasn't feeling so great, so we both were left behind. I'm sure going to miss being with the teens this year, but God knows what is best and maybe He just wants me to stay at home and pray. So I guess I have time to catch you up on all that has been happen in the last month and half. I guess I'm going clear back to May, when the church in Kenyazachee did a street service near their village store. Jason was gone, but I was able to help and be there. Also a choir and several preachers from a sister church came to help. The turkeys were not happy that we had chosen their grazing spot to have our service. Here, pastor Roman is talking with different ones that had stopped to listen. He and the teens helping him were able to give out quite a bit of good litature and New Testaments.

Some of the villagers that came and listened. Pray that the message with stick in their minds.
One of the pastors that shared a message at the street service. Many gave their testamony.
Since I am at home with Josh I will try to get one or two post done each day. A lot has been happening and I need to get it all down in writing and share with you all.

Friday, July 2, 2010

Still alive!!!

Some of you may think that we have dropped off the face of the earth. No we're still breathing, just supper busy. If you haven't heard we are coming home for the kid's schooling and will be heading to the States this month. A lot has happened since I last blogged and hope to show you pictures and tell you all about it. I actually have two days before we head into youth camp so I will try to let you all know what has been happening here in the last 5 weeks.