Saturday, December 20, 2008

Not What I Expected (Part Four)

Below is part four of my newsletter that I sent out recently. If you would be interested in getting my newsletter and prayer requests you can subscribe here.

Greetings Again,

Here is part four of my newsletter:

I thank the Lord for the opportunity to be involved with the School of Ministry. It was enjoyable, challenging, intense, and stretched me more than I expected but isn’t that what we really want and need when it comes to serving our Lord? I never felt adequate for what I was doing but I had hopeful expectation that God would take what I did and use it for good.

We started the school year in September 2007 with three students expecting more over time. Instead, while we gained one more student during the spring semester, two of the three left after the first semester as they got married and decided to go to Italy to work. But even with just a few students Florin and I were determined to do the best we could to teach and serve them. It was a challenge for us as only one of the students was really able to handle the classes. The rest had little previous education or aptitude for it so we spent some of our time teaching them how to study and get the most out of classes.

At the end of the first school year we decided to close down the school to focus more on the church since we didn’t know of any new students planning on coming the next year. We contacted the main Calvary Chapel Bible College in Europe and talked to them about taking the one student who did well. They asked for our class syllabi and after checking them out they told us they were impressed by what we had done and gave the student full credit for the entire school year. Just a few days ago I was chatting with this student online and asked how our program here in Romania compared to the one where she was now and she said they were pretty equivalent. We only charged $100 per semester while Calvary Chapel Bible College Europe charges over $3,000 but that also includes housing and meals. Still, considering everything, I think we had a program we could be proud of.

After we closed the school we began a discussion among the pastors of the various Calvary Chapel churches and ministries in Romania about what we could do to equip people for ministry. Keala Hoe, who was pasturing in Brasov at the time, gave us some great ideas about doing monthly workshops which we took and developed through much discussion. In October we had our first workshop on the gospel basics and sharing your testimony in Bucuresti then again in Bistrita in the middle of November. The next workshop was a week later in Ciorani and it was on an overview of the Bible. In January this workshop will be repeated in Bistrita and in February 2009 we are doing one on how to study the Bible. We call this program "Equipping to Serve".

We are doing each workshop twice, once in the southern part of the country and then in the northern part, to help keep travel costs down for the churches. But every third one or so we are planning on meeting in Brasov which is near the center of the country so that everyone can be together.

I had the privilege of doing the first workshop, Florin did the second and Razvan Pop from Cluj will do the third one in February in Brasov. We want to get all the pastors involved in teaching the workshops as much as possible. For the first workshop, between the two cities, we had about 60 people attend so we are pleased how things have turned out so far. Though I am sure these workshops will change and develop the more we do them.

In part five I will share what I am doing now and how the gospel has become a major focus of my life.

In the grip of His grace,




If you would be interested in giving a one time gift or supporting me regularly you can do so online or by mail. If online go to my church's Donate Online to Missions page and click on the arrow next to Romania. There a drop-down menu will appear where you will see my name. If by mail make the check out to "Chapel Missions" and attach a note saying it is for "William Anderson". On the envelope write:

Calvary Chapel Boise
ATTN: Jana Patton
123 Auto Drive
Boise, ID 83709

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