Friday, December 25, 2009

Christmas 2009

Well what a Christmas celebration we had this year
This photograph does not include all our children or their teachers ( about 100 in all ) who were in another room preparing their programmes.
We reckon we had over 120 non Christian adults at the meeting - many for the first time as they were parents of children in our groups who were doing the programme.

Also for the first time we were doing the meeting on 25 December ( except when it fell on a Sunday ) The new democratic government has made 25 December a national holiday as well as January 7 ( the Russian Orthodox Christmas which was always recognised here in Moldova sicne the revolution.)
There was some concern that if we held the meeting on Friday 25th that there would be a smaller turn out than if on Sunday ( it's always our biggest turn out of the year ).
But we had our biggest turn out ever

Each of our children's groups in Gotesti did a programme. This year we have had to split our smallest group into 2 as we have no room big enough for the group.

The smallest kids did a nativity play and the older ones from the Grupa Mica dressed up as Santa Claus and angels of the Lord. Santa had a small poem exlpaining what benefits he brings to each of us while alternately an angel compared the benefit that Jesus brings. It was challenging to think how we in the West have somehow arrived at the state that Santa is exalted above Jesus

Here Grupa Mijlocie ( middle group ) is singing a song. The outfits were made by some of our Sunday school teachers.

There are over 30 in the group that come regularly to Sunday School and as you can see here only 3 boys. So this is a need for prayer but we thank God how blessed we are with the number of children that come to our meetings.

We are now having nearly 40 adolecents come to the Grupa Mare which meets on a Tuesday and here we are blessed with a good number of boys that come.
This age runs from 12-15 and here Igor is probably having most success in discipling boys in this age range with many of them taking up assisting in children's work and practical help.
Igor and Tanya went off with 15 of this group for a winter camp in Chisinau, the capital kindly part sponsored by a Eurovangelism supporter. Of this group only 3 could we say with some degree of confidence are Christians so please pray that a harvest is reaped amongst the rest before this year is done.
When we got home from the meeting we turned on the TV to the national television station of Romania -TV 1 - the equivalent of BBC1. The news reader began the main lunch time bulletin with these words " Merry Christmas. Two thousand years ago the virgin Mary gave birth to the baby Jesus who is our Lord and Saviour. All round the world millions of Christians, Orthodox, Catholics and Protestants are celebrating his birth to-day"
I sat and listened with rising joy to a national news reader on a secular TV station speak of the virgin birth as an historical fact.
It's been a great day to-day. May the Lord do more than we ask or think this coming year.
Pastor Mark

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