Missions Emphasis Day
March 29, 2015
Missions Emphasis Follow-up
We had very good Missions Emphasis Day last Sunday. In all, $3,045 was collected and designated for the work in Romania (especially in Iasi). Your generous contribution will allow us to fulfill the most pressing needs there (that are feasible at this time): (1) Helping the men travel to the Bible retreat and a one week Bible school close to Cluj (this summer and fall respectively… for Bible teaching and very needed fellowship). (2) Covering the expenses of a preacher (and family) to come to Iasi for a weekend to worship with and preach there (perhaps two or three times in the course of a year). The purpose here is not just to teach and encourage, but also to foster interest in someone moving to Iasi to work with the church there. (3) Translate materials into Romanian that will serve to further ground and encourage the men there and other churches in Romania as well.
Lord willing, Daren will be leaving for Romania on April 23. He is planning to worship with the men at Iasi and then accompany them to the Bible retreat near Cluj, Romania where he will be speaking a couple times. Daren has been invited to return and teach at a Bible training school for church leaders in September.
A Brief History of the Work in Iasi, Romania
Paul and Rachel Holland, Eric and Stephanie Welch, and Daren and Julie Schroeder moved to Iasi, Romania in 2000 in order to establish the Lord's church in this prominent city in the northeastern part of the country. Iasi is a city of around 350,000 people. It is known for its universities, as well as being a cultural center and the heart of Romanian Orthodoxy.
During the first four and a half years of this difficult work, around 14 became Christians (the time that Daren and Julie were there). They returned to the U.S. in December 2004. The other couples continued the work and several more were baptized for the forgiveness of their sins. However, especially in the first several years of the work, more than a few left Romania for other countries for employment. This was a major hindrance to the work. Many who left were of solid character and could have been so very useful to the establishment of a strong church in Iasi. Additionally, a few became unfaithful to the Lord.
In 2008 the other two couples returned to the U.S. Since that time there has not been any regular work done in that region of Romania with the exception of "Apa vie" (Living Water) going out to every resident of the city each quarter. (This was a brief magazine styled after the House to House publication. This work ceased with the death of the man who was providing funds for this good work). However, a band of three men have continued to faithfully meet together (in their apartments) for worship every first day of the week. The men alternate with the teaching responsibilities.
In October of 2014 the men of the Godley church of Christ asked Daren to draw up a proposal as to what needed to be done to assist the church in Iasi. Daren did so (after having discussions with the former missionaries to Romania and others). He presented this proposal to the acceptance of the men late in 2014.
(The basic proposal will be added soon.)