Much has happened since our last prayer letter. I had one typed up to send in May but more things kept happening. The following have been the highlights.
UPDATE ON MARKET PLAN
We were trying to get permission to have a spot at the markets to have Bibles, tracts, and public location to witness. We spoke to the interim mayor who told us it was not his jurisdiction. When we talked with one of the market managers, he changed his story from what he originally told us. Our next step is to call the owner of the markets. We have tried several times to find the manager in office again but to no avail. Pray for wisdom as we continue to seek the needed permission.
OUR FIRST BAPTISMS
On June 7th, we had the joy of baptizing Jeanet and our daughter, Abby. The owners of a hotel in town allowed us to use their swimming pool and refused to take any payment. They opened the pool for us an hour earlier than the public hours to accommodate us. For a number of years, Jeanet has wanted to be baptized after trusting in Christ, but due to living in different countries for her husband’s work, she has not had opportunity. We praise the Lord that He led us together for this time and allowed us to baptize her. We were blessed to hear her testimony of her being raised Catholic but later understanding the Gospel and being saved through Christ alone. Abby was thrilled to follow the Lord in baptism. Please pray for Jeanet and Abby as they continue to follow the Lord.
A group from our sending church, Heritage Baptist Church, came for a week to help us with work on our house. Though we did not requested the help, we thank the Lord for putting the idea and desire in their hearts. We loved seeing familiar faces again and getting to meet someone new that had joined our home church since our furlough. The week gave us an opportunity to get to know the men better. Thanks to their help we were able to take a giant step towards having two bedrooms upstairs before the end of the year. We were humbled by the men’s sacrifice of their time and money to be a blessing to us. The men’s testimony had a positive effect on Moldovans in town, too.
While the group was here, Pastor and Mrs. Sevilla joined us in holding our first VBS here in Soroca. The first day, we had no children join us for the first half hour;, but shortly after, we ended up having about 15 children. On the third and last day, we had about 20 children. Our theme this year was the Word of God, with each child receiving a Romanian Bible on the last day. The children listened very well and were excited to have their own Bible and ask to take more for other family members. Pray for wisdom as we consider having a regular outreach to children in our area and seek to reach their parents.
PASTOR AND MRS. SEVILLA’S VISIT
The whipped cream and cherry on top of the group’s visit was having our pastor and his wife with us during the week and our church allowing them to stay with us for an extra week after the group left. We loved the encouragement, fellowship, and counsel. Pastor went on visitation with Jacob and me, allowing him an even better glimpse into Moldovan life and our work here. Mrs. Sevilla helped with just about everything and was a blessing to Stephanie. Our children had “adopted grandparents” for two weeks before their real grandparents came to stay a week with us, too.
Our visitation each week leaves us wondering what will happen next. Many people do not wish to talk with us, some allow us to talk to them about Christ, some are drunk when they answer to door, but sometimes we have some extremes. One man threatened to call the police and called us lazy for not having “real” jobs. This last week, though, we were invited into two apartments and were able to share the entire Gospel. Please continue to pray for faithfulness, boldness, compassion, and wisdom on our part as we share the Gospel each week.
This week we celebrated Ana’s first birthday. We thank the Lord for her and believe her middle name (named after my grandmother), Joy, is very fitting for her. Please pray for us as parents to raise our children in the nurture and admonition of the Lord.