Friday, 7 June 2019

Churches Together...

The last two weeks for me have been filled with busyness and exciting events. Last week I was in Jeruzalem again. This time it was for a conference for pastors and ministry workers from across South East Europe to come together with a group from Northern Ireland. Some of you may remember that I went to a similar event 3 years ago when I was still thinking and praying about whether I should move to Slovenia. Some people I remembered from last time whilst for others it was their first time to Slovenia. It was a great time of fellowship and mutual encouragement. Many workers in this part of the world are often isolated or do not have much support and so it is great that people want to travel here to hear more about the work that is being done. The weather didn't cooperate for the first day and a half, it was incredibly rainy! By the start of June though the temperatures started to soar to mid to high 20s. There was no gradual increase into the summer weather but it looks like it is here to stay now!

After my few days in Jeruzalem I travelled to Ptuj last Saturday to join a group of workers there who are trying to plant a church. They were having a prayer morning for the work and it was great to see and hear more about what is being done there.

Sunday was a very exciting day for my church, a church in Maribor and a church from another part of Slovenia (I can't remember which one and I'm sure to get it wrong if I try and guess!) We had a baptismal service for 5 young people from the 3 churches. I knew two of the people being baptised. One was a teenager from my church and one was a teenager from the church in Maribor but she has been on our camps and is very good friends with some of the girls in my church. It was a real encouragement to hear the stories of how God has been working in their lives and leading them to a point where they put their whole trust in Him. The 3 churches had a joint service together on a farm near Maribor. The weather was lovely which was good because there was very little shelter for the 100+ people if it had started to rain. I have learnt that a baptismal service here is a real time of fellowship and celebration. It is an event that lasts through most of the day. We had a church service, then the baptisms and then a picnic that lasted well into the afternoon. It was great for me to see so many people I knew but also great that there were many there that I didn't know. Please be praying for these 5 people that they would be continuing to trust in God but also that they would be a great encouragement to those around them, especially to non christian friends and family who may not understand the significance of baptism.

This week has also been quite busy for me but in a completely different way. My parents arrived here on Tuesday and so we have been spending this week visiting different parts of the country and learning more about the people and the culture here. I will be sad to say goodbye to them next week but please be praying for me as I try to get back into the swing of my normal routine here after they go.

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