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Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Europe Teen Challenge Fall Meeting, Hlohovec, Slovakia

We just came back from a visit to Slovakia. A while back we received, through Europe Teen Challenge, an invitation to attend the Fall Leadership Meeting in Hlohovec. A wonderful opportunity for us to meet the country directors from all over Europe in one weekend.

After care house, Gutes Land, Germany
We decided to drive all the way to Slovakia, so we could spend the night at Teen Challenge Gutes Land in Vilsbiburg, Germany. We were welcomed by three happy and grateful men, who currently live in the after care house, that we also gave a donation for. In the meantime they were able to find jobs (hallelujah) nearby, so they are gaining more and more responsibility. Wednesday night we were invited to share the Word with the twelve (!) guys that are currently in the program, a full house for sure. We also visited a company that imports and exports second hand citybuses. The owner turned out to be very friendly and willing to help us finding a bus for Teen Challenge Czech.

Teen Challenge Sered, Slovakia
While at the conference in Slovakia we visited the Teen Challenge children's home and men's home + re-entry house. Wonderful to see such work in action. During the weekend we were grateful for the opportunities to talk with many of the people behind our projects, such as Sasa & Svetlana (Serbia), Matjaz & Magdalena (Slovenia), Peter Ministr (Czech) and Jonatan & Valentina Vlaisavljevic (Macedonia). They send their greetings to all of you! We also met some new faces and were greatly encouraged to hear that in all corners of Europe new initiatives to share the gospel with the down and outcast are popping up. God is calling people everywhere to put their hands to the plow, no matter how small the work may seem. We heard of new plans in Malta, Finland, and Austria. Small scale projects that we just LOVE and that need a lot of encouragement.

Our Project Coffee Bus Czech Republic turns out to be a bit more complicated than we first expected. There is a law in Czech Republic that says buses older than eight years cannot be imported. We will further discuss with Peter Ministr what to do now. Maybe we can purchase a smaller passenger van or a camper, although there seem to be age restrictions for these vehicles too. Please pray with us that we will be able to somehow help them set up this mobile coffee house to be used for outreach purposes.

Prayer for TC Macedonia
Our Project Heating System Macedonia is going well... we have almost reached our goal. The Teen Challenge house in the city of Skopje is currently heated using electricity. This is not very economical. Most of the houses in Macedonia are heated with the help of a wood burner that transfers heat throughout the house. As soon as we are able to donate the 2,500 euro needed for this project, a contractor will come to put in a new heating system. We are confident this will take place before winter starts.

We are so thankful, and we see it as an honor to deliver donations, prayers and greetings wherever we go!

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