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  • Rich Davis

Eyes Wide Open

Then Elisha prayed and said, “O Lord, I pray, open his eyes that he may see.” And the Lord opened the servant’s eyes and he saw; and behold, the mountain was full of horses and chariots of fire all around Elisha” (2 Kings 6:17).


This letter is not about bad news as there is plenty of that bombarding us every day. The good news is that things are not what they seem on the surface as Elisha knew very well. Elisha’s God is still on the Throne, and He has not changed or lost control of the world for even a second. Please rejoice with us as we share a small dose of reality from Eastern Europe and Moldova in particular.


 


Rich leading a breakout session on "Barriers to Sending Cross-Cultural Workers." Jo Ann is making sure that he stays on track!


Jo Ann and I just returned from a week of meetings in Turkey along with fellow ABWE missionaries and national partners from several countries in Eastern Europe and Central Asia. Our focus was on sending cross-cultural workers to the fields that need the seed of the gospel.


One of the men, knowledgeable about how well we are doing in church planting and sending cross-cultural workers (missionaries), told us that Moldova, Romanian, and Ukraine are by far the most active and successful in all of Europe, bar none. Perhaps we might think that the war in Ukraine would be an obstacle to preaching the gospel, but we would be wrong. Gospel preaching churches in Ukraine are seeing people flooding to their doors with many trusting Christ and being baptized. ABWE missionaries remain in Ukraine despite the threat of Russian missiles along with courageous and faithful Ukrainian pastors to minister to the physical and spiritual needs of the people.

 


The group of leaders and trainers that attended the first session at the newest center near the border of Romania.


Open Hearts


In our last prayer/newsletter, we mentioned the possible opening of new training centers for active church planters. The Lord answered prayer in a fantastic way such that we now have four training centers filled with men and women who are leaders desiring to see churches multiplied. The total of church planters attending from all four centers is 45 leaders. Can you imagine what the Lord is going to do with this first class of church planters?


ABWE missionary, Bill Braun, and I are the teachers in this initial course of the Institute of Church Planting (ICP). The goal is that upon completion of this first church planting course, there will be qualified national brethren who will be able to take some of the teaching responsibilities. Please pray with us that the Lord would raise up solid national leadership during the next couple of years. We are asking the Lord to multiply leaders, that there might be multiple churches planted, with each church planting more churches to even the fourth generation.


Because the church planters are bi-vocational and actively planting churches in towns and villages, they are not able to leave their families, work, and ministries to attend a Christian school like UDG where Jo Ann and I teach regularly. We must take the training to them, which means quite a bit of time on the road for Bill and me. The training center farthest from Chisinau is about 100 miles away, and takes us 2 ½ hours to drive each way plus the 4 hours of classroom time once we are there. We can be found teaching ICP courses on any given Thursday, Friday, or Saturday in one or another of the four centers. Sometimes, Bill teaches in one center while I am teaching in another town at the same time.


By God’s grace, two of the centers should complete the church planting course by the summer of 2025 and the newest two centers should complete the training by Christmas of 2025. Please pray for all the leaders who are studying with us that they might be able to complete the training and implement the skills they are receiving in the planting of new churches that will multiply with daughter, granddaughter, and great granddaughter churches! New Testament churches should reproduce just as families reproduce.


 

Bill teaching the ICP material at the newest center in the Russian language.


Open Opportunities


The Lord has expanded the ICP beyond our original vision! This is not the first time He has blessed beyond our greatest expectations, but we should not be surprised! It was the British missionary William Carey that said, "Expect great things from God; attempt great things for God."


There are five books in the church planting course that we teach and the cost of printing each book is almost $20 each. With 45 leaders studying, you can do the math. This exponential growth is a huge blessing but brought with it costs that exceed the normal ministry funds that we have available each month. We find ourselves needing to expand the purpose of the project fund for the Institute of Church Planting (ICP), We are helping several of the leaders with fuel and maintenance for their cars, and now we are praying that we can use some of the funds in this project account to help with supplying the training materials. If you believe that the Lord would have you be a part of making this project successful, please click on the following link and give as the Lord leads.



Harvest time is the time of the year when we celebrate Thanksgiving here in Moldova as we do in North America. We are thankful first to the Lord for His abundant blessings and to each of you who do pray for us regularly. We are thankful to those who faithfully give that we might continue to serve here in Moldova and also those who are able to help with this special ICP project. The Lord is good all the time!


It may seem that in every direction that we look, the world is falling apart. The reality is that God’s kingdom is growing and He is accomplishing great things despite outward appearances!

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jane clara
a day ago

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Apr 17

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Lamb Herman
Lamb Herman
Apr 16

 Gospel preaching churches in Ukraine are seeing people flooding to their doors with many trusting Christ and being baptized. snow rider 3d

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hana Jenny
hana Jenny
Apr 16

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Marikan Sukasi
Marikan Sukasi
Apr 16

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