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Wednesday, August 8, 2018

Visit to Teen Challenge Lithuania

Teen Challenge women's home
Last weekend we (Jan and Marja) were visiting the country of Lithuania. At the end of May we presented project Teen Challenge women's home on this blog and we have now been able to transfer a donation of 6,000 euro for renovation of the roof.

By the way, that is only half of the amount calculated for this job. [Should anyone have a good idea to raise more funds ....]

We had an open invitation to come to Lithuania for years. Finally, the time was there. We received  a warm welcome from Edvardas & Rasa Kleinas, the directors of Teen Challenge Lithuania. They were our guides for the weekend :)
Edvardas & Rasa

We paid a visit to the women's center where we got a tour of the entire property.

There are currently 19 women and 6 children in this residential program. Actually, they are two houses. A large house (on the right, in the picture) where everyone sleeps, also the workers and volunteers, and a smaller house where the dining room, recreation room and the classroom are located.

Sharing testimonies
We met with the women and children, listened to their testimonies, shared a practical life lesson from the Bible and prayed with and for each other. Most women are here because of problems with alcohol and drugs, homelessness, crime and/or because they are tired of the street life.

For many it is the first place where they get to know God's love, mercy and forgiveness. Slowly but surely they receive hope for recovery!

Teen Challenge men's center
Later that day, after a scrumptious lunch, we went to visit the men's center. A beautiful farm where 19 men are currently in the program. We spent a lot of time with them, listened to their stories and prayed with each one of them. One man decided to invite Jesus Christ into his life, something he had not yet come to do.

The stories were intense, as always: alcohol, drugs, prison sentences, criminal activities etc. What a joy that there is a place where these men can recover, make a new start and be prepared for healthy participation in society.

Encouraging one another
The director of the center, Andrej Bersenovas, went through this very program 15 years (!) ago!

The men's center also offers help for boys who, at the age of 18, come out of orphanages and have no place to go. There are ideas to build a house for them on the property (perhaps a project we can support in the future).

Sunday morning we were invited to speak in Kauno Krikščionių Bažnyčia, a church with a big heart 💗for the work of Teen Challenge. Great to see the women and men from the rehabilitation centers here again.

Sunday morning service
We are grateful for the kindness and trust of pastor Rytis and Valda Berūkštis with whom we spoke extensively while enjoying excellent meals. We endorse the importance of good relationships with local churches.

You can view the Sunday morning service HERE.

Edvardas and Rasa also showed us around Kaunas and the capital Vilnius. Fantastic, such beautiful cities, well worth a visit!

Sharing God's love (+ Teen Challenge cards)
It is also a good time to pray for a spiritual revival in the Baltic states. From August 30 to September 2nd, Awakening Europe Baltija 2018 will take place in Riga (Latvija) ... and it is no coincidence that we also support a project there :)

The projects we support as a Traveling Light offer the opportunity to visit nations (at our own expense) and see what God is doing around Europe!

GIFTS (large and small) are always welcome and can be directed at St. Traveling Light in Papendrecht, IBAN: NL91RABO0118582275 BIC: RABONL2U.

We are grateful for your support.

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