Teleios Ministry

Monday, November 06, 2006

Rejoicing In The Work Of The Lord!

On Women's World Day of Prayer, Bonnie
speaks to the women in Satu Mare about the
importance of prayer.

The women of the Satu Mare Church recognize the power
of prayer and spent two hours interceding on behalf
of other women around the world.

Recognizing The Power Of Prayer
This morning and afternoon was the first time to rest and to spend a long time talking with Elisabeth and Zoltan.

In the evening, the Satu Mare Women participated in the Women’s World Day of Prayer. Bonnie spoke on the Importance of Prayer and shared the prayer requests of women in Latin and South America. The 67 women present spent two hours in prayer for prayer requests from the women around the world. Tunda Suczs, the new co-pastor’s wife at Satu Mare, led the prayer time.

Floyd spent the evening in a time of prayer with the leadership of the church. They also discussed the future mission needs and partnership between Satu Mare Church and Teleios Ministry. The first gifts from the Christmas catalog were distributed—a pulpit and baptistery for the new Sandorhomok Mission Church. The meeting included a time of thanksgiving for the growth of the previous partnership relationships.

The evening ended around the Vekas table. A delicious meal of marmalika (yellow grits), “forest” mushrooms in sauce, and tender beef was served. These times spent around the table sharing have always been one of the highlights of our friendship and special relationship with the Vekas family. Benjamin even agreed to send a formal recommendation for Floyd to work in a restaurant after witnessing Floyd’s ability to handle whipped cream. Zoltan continues to recover. In a month, he will probably begin chemotherapy as a follow-up to his previous liver cancer surgery

Tuesday morning, Bonnie and I leave for Turda with Daniel Pusok to spend two days with him and his wife, Adina. Bonnie will lead in a women’s prayer time on Tuesday evening, and Floyd will preach in two churches on Wednesday evening.

We are uncertain of being able to post a blog after this one. We will do what we can.

We rejoice in the work of the Lord through the partnerships here in the Satu Mare area.

Tunda Suczs, wife of the new co-pastor at
the Satu Mare Church, leads the prayer time.
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Sunday, November 05, 2006

A Day Of Dedication And Rejoicing!

People were lined up to attend the dedication service
of the new mission church building in Sandorhomok.

Testimonies of God's work in the fulfillment
of this dream were shared during the service.

Experiencing The Presence Of The Lord
The morning began with prayer and a worship service in Satu Mare. After the one hour and 15-minute prayer time, the morning worship service began and centered on the Lord’s Supper.

Floyd preached the preparation sermon for the Lord’s Supper from Romans 5:1-11 and Matthew 6:26. The presence of the Holy Spirit was so evident during the service. We had our first meal with the new co-pastor of Satu Mare and his wife and family, Sandor and Tunda Suzcs and their young sons, Daniel and Kristian. Please pray for them as they serve with the Satu Mare church.

In the afternoon, the new mission church building at Sanderhormok was opened and dedicated to the Lord. The emotion of the worship was very strong. The reported attendance was 70—this was a great blessing and opportunity to share Christ with the community. The Satu Mare Brass Band led in music as the congregation entered the church building for the first time. The worship service was filled with testimonies, singing, preaching of the Gospel, and prayer times. The church building was filled to overflowing—apparently the building may be already too small as many people came.

After three and one-half years of opposition from local religious leaders and local civic leaders, property for this mission church was purchased. Even today, the people of the village were warned that the “new church” was their enemy. Floyd preached from Acts 4:23-33.

We rushed to Satu Mare for the evening worship service. Bonnie shared greetings and a testimony. The service was filled with testimonies, children sharing poems, and a surprise visit by Zoltan Vekas. Zoltan came down to the worship service for about 10 minutes and greeted the church thanking them for their prayers and encouraging them to be faithful to the Lord.

The day was full but filled with a powerful movement of the Spirit of God in every service. Our partnership with the Satu Mare church was reaffirmed. The day was a celebration of the work of the partnership in the Gospel. The Satu Mare church sends their greetings to their brothers and sisters in Christ around the world with joy and encouragement to serve the Lord.

People gathered inside and outside the new building
and sang songs of praise to God's glory for all He has done
in the Sandorhomok area.
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Saturday, November 04, 2006

Congratulations to Magdi and Arpad!

Magdi and Arpad - the happy couple!

A beautiful ceremony for a lovely couple.

A Special Day!
Bonnie and I woke up to below freezing temperatures and light snow. Zoltan Vekas let us use his car, and we drove to Zalau to attend Magdi and Arpad’s wedding. The trip was beautiful. At times, the snow was coming down so fast and the wind was blowing so hard that you could barely see. But, the road was excellent.

We arrived at Magdi’s house just in time to witness a caravan of cars and men marching to her front door. Arpad, backed by his army, asked for Magdi’s father. He met them at the front door. Arpad gave a speech asking to “steal” (the Hungarian translation given to us) Magdi in marriage. We enjoyed cakes, coffee, and meeting all her family. Then we began the journey to the church in Crasna.

First, we stopped for photographs in the park (snowing, 29 F, and windy). Then, the caravan of decorated cars paraded over the hills, by the lake, and through the villages to the church in Crasna. The wedding service began at 2 p.m. and lasted for two hours. There were two sermons, a brass band, two choirs, poems, the exchanging of vows, and the blessing of the marriage.

The worship service was very special time. Magdi and Arpad sat in front of the congregation on the pulpit level. Bonnie brought greetings from Teleios Ministry partners, ACTS Fellowship in Greenville, Global Women, and personal greetings from Catherine Allen. She challenged the couple to be a “light on a hill” from Matthew 5.

The reception that followed began with “snacks”—fresh mushroom spread, chicken fingers, spiced meatballs, ham, salami, cheese, breads, and fruits. Then, we had chicken noodle soup (a special Hungarian soup made with homemade egg noodles and “fresh” chicken). The third course was stuffed cabbage rolls with sour cream (Floyd’s favorite) and fresh bread.

Then we went upstairs for a time of celebration. For us, the most significant event upstairs was when Magdi and Arpad shared how they had seen the “mystery or miracle” of God’s work in their relationship. After an hour upstairs, we came back down and saw that it was 9:30 p.m. Since Bonnie and I had a one and one-half hour drive back to Satu Mare through the snow-covered hills and roads, we left early before the main course. Traditionally, after the main course comes the cakes and then the bridal cake. Magdi’s mother prepared two boxes of cakes for our ride back and for the Vekas family.

It was a great day of celebration and a special day to share with Arpad and Magdi.

The reception was a time of fun and fellowship. Posted by Picasa

Thursday, November 02, 2006

Cold Weather, Warm Reunions!

What a joy to welcome Zoltan Vekas
home from the hospital!

Helga was just learning to play the piano
when Floyd and Bonnie first came to Remata
and now she's the church organist.

Cold Day, Warm Reunions!
Today, Thursday, was a great day for us. We walked about the city in the morning while it was below freezing. In the afternoon, Zoltan Vekas arrived home. He rode home lying down in the back of a Opel Astra station wagon from Debrecen, Hungary to Satu Mare on a palette of blankets, pillows, and throws. Elisabeth came with him driven by David. This was a great day for Benjamin and Blanka. We prayed together thanking the Lord for our joyous reunion.

Bonnie and I left soon afterwards for two churches about 40 kilometers from Satu Mare. On the way, it started snowing heavily. By the time we arrived at the church, the snow ended.

The first church we stopped at was Remeta. We were in this church in May 2000 on Floyd’s first trip to Romania. The village church was where Floyd preached the first time he was in Romania. This was also where we had our first meal in a Hungarian home (other than with the Vekas family).

From the picture, you can see that the men and women sit on opposite sides of the church here in Remeta. The church members still remember that Floyd sat with the women when he first came into the church in 2000—but quickly changed sides. They also remember that Bonnie left her Bible in the church. This was a great time of remembering and celebrating the work of God in everyone’s life since then. The organist, Helga, was a child learning the piano six and half years ago. We prayed for her.

The second church was in Ocrasa Nou. There was no heat in the church and it the temperature was -4 C or about 25 F. Bonnie shared and Floyd preached with “fire.” There were about 25 people, mostly women, at this service but half of the women were not believers—they had been invited by their friends. One of the women knew Bonnie from the Women’s Conference in Harghita in May. Please pray for these churches. They both asked us to bring greetings to their brothers and sisters in Christ.

Tomorrow is a busy day. We will drive Zoltan’s car to Zalau and Crasna for Magdi and Arpi’s wedding. Please continue your prayers for the wedding. Pray for safety in travel for all. The weather is expected to be very cold and more snow.

Women sit on one side and men on
the other at the church in Remeta.
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Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Greetings From Romania!

The children have fun getting together
during their time at kindergarten.

These young men at the Acas church,
baptized last October, enjoy singing.

We're Here!
After a delay in Greenville, we arrived at Dulles Airport in Washington, D.C. just in time to board our flight to Vienna on Austrian Air. Our neighbor on the flight was a design engineer traveling to Russia to “sell” parts for a four-wheel drive combine (to harvest wheat and corn).

For all concerned, the food was good—even though one of the flight attendants was overheard saying that they were short some meals. Bonnie slept the entire flight, during the layover in Vienna, and on the flight from Vienna to Cluj.

The time with Magdi and Arpad (Arpi) and their families was great. Floyd had to purchase a tie in Zalau. The Pap family are gracious hosts. The weather was very cold with a strong wind—brrrrr! The Dalmatian puppies must have been stolen because every dog in Zalau barked on Tuesday night.

Today, Wednesday, we drove to Satu Mare. Just before we arrived in Satu Mare, it began to sleet. By evening, the sleet turned to rain since it was only 38 F. Benjamin Vekas informed us that Zoltan has developed a fever of around 101-102. However, Zoltan hopes to come home—we will see.

Tonight we worshipped with the Acas Roma Church. It was a wonderful time of worship and fellowship. About 30 percent of the church members are in Hungary working in order to find higher paying jobs this time of year. We sang familiar hymns like “I Am Satisfied with Jesus.” When Barnabas Kovacs started to introduce us, the Acas members said they knew who we were. Bonnie shared greetings from Teleios Partners and family. She used Psalm 122:1: “I was glad when they said to me let us go into the house of the Lord.”

We received exciting news concerning the church. One of the young men has started University studies—the very first for the church. He had learned to read at the church. Another member has begun studying at the Bible School in Zalau. The church, mission, and we are so excited by this news. So many Teleios Partners have been involved in the Acas mission. It is one of our oldest partnerships.

The Acas church sent the following greetings to be shared with you and all the brothers and sisters around the world: Acts 10:34-35, “Opening his mouth, Peter said: "I most certainly understand now that God is not one to show partiality, but in every nation the person who fears Him and does what is right is welcome to Him.” He said, “As Gypsy (Roma people), they know that they are different color, poor, and despised—an unworthy people. (Many people discriminate against them.) Yet, God has made us all brothers and sisters in Christ. Please share with all our brothers and sisters, regardless of their color, race, language, our greetings with love in Jesus Christ.”

One man asked that we pray for his son, Marius, who has cancer. He is in remission but to pray for God’s continued healing of his son. They thank God for his life.

The kindergarten at the church continues to serve all the community. This is a great blessing for the church and community.

So many of the Acas members we recognized as those who were baptized during our other visits with the church. The blessing is to see many who continue to be faithful since we first started coming to Acas in May 2000.

One of the members in the Acas church
reads Scripture as a greetings to everyone.

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Floyd preaches at the Acas church while
Barnabas Kovacs, an elder in the church and
"caretaker, guide and translator" for Floyd
and Bonnie, translates the message.