Monday 13 October 2014

Happy 50th!

Again this week I have seen multiple maps and articles that commented on how secular Europe is. And Czech continues to be one of the nations leading the way, along with Estonia, with less than a fifth of the population believing there is a higher power, and less than 1% being evangelical Christians.

And it is statistics like this that make what happened yesterday all the more exciting. Yesterday my church here celebrated fifty years of God's faithfulness! Fifty years ago this church was planted and, despite extra seats, there were people standing in the foyer during our church service.

Each of the former pastors were there giving greetings - well, the first one is eighty-five and lives a few hours away so he gave his greetings via a recorded video. 

It's incredible to think about the legacy of faith in a church that survived communism. We have a lot of young people in our church and as we watched our Sunday school kids perform it was exciting to think of the continued witness and impact this church will prayerfully have.

Each week our musical worship comes in a few different forms - a worship group, an organ for Polish hymns, and often we have a choir too. This blurry photo was taken as we sang How Great is Our God in Polish, led by our worship group. On Saturday night we hosted a youth night for several of the local youth groups and we sang four songs - in four languages. It's a little taste of heaven as we flit between Czech, Polish, Slovak and English (definitely the least common) worship songs.

This week the church that planted this church sent some of their choir, just like they did all those decades ago, to encourage our church.

Our church is one of the biggest churches in our denomination in the country now. And in his sermon Dave Patty, Josiah Venture's president, who has lived in the Czech Republic for twenty years, encouraged us to be completely dependent on God's grace as we continue to minister to this town, the Czech Republic and beyond. 

During the service we received bookmarks - the back says 
"We want to reach the world"
"We want to glorify Christ"
"We want to make disciples"

I pray that, relying on God's grace, we would do these things well in this little corner of this country and beyond. 

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