Bucharest International Church (BIC)
Once again, the Bucharest International Church is at an important junction. A larger venue is needed to receive the four cultural groups that gather each Sunday. The outdoor courtyard setting at our Activity Center is viable during warmer weather but not during the cold, winter months.
Part of an International Church dynamic is that internationals leave once their two-to-four-year contract is over. As this happens, new people come in and new ministry structures need to be formed. Historically, the leadership base is comprised of nationals that provide the needed stability.
“Bringing people together and creating a cohesive team requires a lot of availability, time, and energy. Most people don’t have any or all of that!” comments Pastor Cristi. “The challenge in Bucharest is to choose priorities and create habits so the rhythms of the city do not determine one’s personal rhythm. It is important to be a part of a church community, to nurture those relationships that enhance life.”
Nepalese Church 2nd Anniversary
The Nepalese are one of the current people groups entering Europe by the thousands. In Romania, they are becoming the work force in the hospitality and construction sectors. At BIC, the Nepalese Church celebrated their 2nd anniversary. Pastors Boaz and Ruth have established and continue to develop a strong leadership team. They are intentional about building a network that connects and supports the workers and families in their new localities in Romania and across Europe.
The Russian government is not relenting in their pursuit of Ukrainian territory. This unsettled scenario causes Ukrainians to continually reassess their future. Though the number of refugees is not as large as previously, they do still seek shelter in Romania. The UBC 2022 (Ukrainian Bucharest Churches) Refugee Center continues to provide support to help them establish a sense of normalcy. Supplies are also collected and convoyed into Ukraine to meet the desperate needs of the people attempting to rebuild their lives.
“We find our normal by helping our neighbor”
“In perhaps the most abnormal time that we live in, in a fight with a terrorist country, we find our normal by helping our neighbor,” shares Olya. A Ukrainian by birth, Olya is a long-term member of BIC, and regularly aids her fellow-Ukrainians.
The transport of volunteers and supplies is costly. It takes a lot of effort, time, and volunteering hands to load the trucks and vans. At the destination, other volunteers are waiting to unload, to sort everything and make packages for families in need. Then they load the smaller cars that take aid to the villages.
In Harkhiv, Olya talked with a pastor and some volunteers. They don't know whether they'll live to see tomorrow. But it somehow doesn't bother them. "What do you worry about?" she asked. “Well, about fulfilling as many needs as possible today, about showing love today, about having enough gas and supplies to bring to needy people,” answered the pastor.
Pray with us for BIC:
- An adequate facility for Sunday morning gatherings
- A cohesion of ministry teams
- Finances to continue supporting the refugee center and personnel
Reaching Out Romania with director Iana Matei:
Rescuing young girls from human trafficking
God is Good and Faithful!
“God always provides,” says Iana. “It is like the loaves and fish.” Contributions for school supplies, food, voluntary assistance, and financial gifts have come into the shelter in such a variety of ways over the last weeks. As much as these donors and their contributions are valued, this still doesn’t cover the always present, daily financial costs of operations!
School: A Joy to Learn
“The role of school in a child's life is very important. It is a place where they can develop, make friends, learn new things, and get the chance to have a different life,” says Iana.
Four young Roma Gypsy sisters, ages 10-14, were brought to the shelter by Child Protection in July. They have never attended school before. They were so excited on their first day. Though they are doing their homework, they are far behind the other students.
The new school administrator, fortunately of better understanding than the previous one, encouraged Iana saying, “I understand the situation. They’ll catch up.” Each afternoon, the girls return home talking non-stop, “We did this, and we did that!”
A First-Ever Birthday Party
Young *Irina just turned twelve. No one had ever celebrated her birthday before. Baking a cake, receiving gifts, organizing a party, are all things many of us take for granted on our special day. The girls in the shelter were so happy to be a part of this special moment and Irina can now form new and happy memories.(*Name changed for privacy)
Pray with us for ROR:
- Finances to meet the daily operational costs during this time of inflation
- The girls will come to know the love of God, that He created them in His image, and He has a beautiful future for them.