Monday, 11 May 2020

The Lockdown Eases...

 My apologies to those of you in countries still with strict lockdown measures in place. Here in Slovenia we are, thankfully, finally starting to ease the lockdown. In the last week there has been at most 6 new cases in a day so we are definitely in a good place to start getting back to normal. This means that places such as cafes have started opening up again although only their outside portions. Public transport is now operational again although with very strict instructions listed at the bus stop (5 points** to whoever works out what the list in the picture means*. *No points if you already speak Slovene. **Points don't necessarily mean prizes). It's not surprising really but I liked the fact that they put up a dummy's guide to using the bus during this period! Schools will soon be opening up again but only for certain grades. We are also now allowed to travel around the country. I'm definitely looking forward to the opportunity to get out of Ljubljana!

My biggest fears lately have been how all this affects my return to the UK that is currently scheduled for the end of August. I have heard that Ljubljana airport is due to reopen next week which is great. I just have to wait and see if my flight will go ahead as scheduled. I'm praying that it will all go well. My parents had been due to come visit me at the beginning of June but this will obviously have to be postponed. I had hoped that they would be able to take a suitcase of stuff back with them but I guess this means that I will have to leave a few more things than I hoped here in Slovenia. The good news is that I'm definitely hoping to be back in Ljubljana by next September. Plans need to be confirmed and obviously I need to raise the finances to continue serving God in Slovenia (if you want to know how you can help in this way, please email me at s.re.deacon@gmail.com). Please be praying for me as I try to make plans for the future in this very uncertain time.

Although things are starting to open up, it's still not certain when my normal activities will resume and when we will be able to meet again as a church. Churches who own their own buildings are starting services again, although it looks like they will be socially distanced with little or no fellowship. My housemate who goes to the Pentecostal church described it as turn up, listen to the sermon, go home straight away! My church does not own its own building and so we are governed by the decisions of the organisation who own and run the building we use on a Sunday. We also rent space for our youth groups so again we have to wait and see what they say. This means that I'm going to be living online for at least the next couple of weeks. I am, as I'm sure many of you are, very grateful for the invention of the internet during this period. Although I can't meet with people face to face, I am still able to meet with them and I continue to be encouraged by the girls I meet with on a regular basis. I'm now just counting down the days until I can see people in real life again and have a proper coffee and ice cream with them!


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