Monday, December 15, 2008

Missional Church Center Latvia Update 3

It’s Christmas time, and everywhere you turn in Latvia there are reminders. Notices of concerts are posted throughout the cities, decorations adorn homes and businesses. Traditional carols play in elevators and lobbies. Christmas trees light the night. In Old Town Riga, vendors are set-up for the traditional fair-like atmosphere that accompanies the Christmas season.

But, according to the Riga in Your Pocket visitors guide provided in the hotel rooms, Latvians still celebrate their pagan holidays and Christmas is celebrated with feasting, drinking and singing. Unfortunately for 95% of Latvians, Christmas is celebrated without a personal knowledge of Jesus Christ. They do not know the meaning of this Holy Season.

I want to thank you for your support during these wonderfully rich days of ministry here. God has been so good to us and your partnership has meant much. Now I ask you to continue to pray for the students who are now completing their year of intense training at Baltic Pastoral Institute. As their year of study concludes, they will be going to pastor churches and start new churches in the days ahead.

It was my privilege to ride along with the Bishop of the Evangelical Union to a little community near the Estonian border, where one of the students was installed as pastor and licensed to the Gospel ministry. As he and his wife knelt while hands were laid on them and prayers asked God’s blessing, I was deeply moved. This young couple represents the future of what our Father will do in Latvia. In rural villages and metropolitan centers, the spiritual needs are great. But our God is a great God. The faith of Pastor and Mrs. Valter Mitans is great faith. God is beginning a new work in Latvia. His churches have committed to begin one hundred new churches across Latvia in the next eight years. For this country it is a giant sized vision. And it is the best Christmas gift they could ever give to the people of Latvia.

If you will commit to remember Latvian Christians during this Holy Season, please let us know by placing a comment below. Your prayers will encourage the hearts of your brothers and sisters here in Latvia.

See Milfred Minatrea's video updates from Latvia at http://www.youtube.com/missionalchurch.

1 comment:

ImLivinItNow said...

Here in the West, I think we tend to live in a bubble, rarely thinking past our own experience and boundaries. Your trip has burst my bubble world and opened my eyes. I will definitely be praying for the Latvian Church and its leadership.