We send you our warmest greetings from Serbia in the name of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. We hope, pray and trust that this letter finds you well.
We will start this letter with a short update on COVID-19. Unlike most Western countries, only about 60% of adult Serbians have chosen to get a vaccine, which is why we are still struggling with the virus and the toll it takes. We have, however, managed to stay on our schedule over the summer and hold all the events that we had planned.
The pastor’s family retreat was cancelled last year because of COVID but this year we had 10 families and a few single pastors take part. Over five days, we studied Daniel and Romans 8 together and enjoyed wonderful weather and fellowship. Our children’s ministry this year was very vibrant – there were more than 15 children who enjoyed their own programme and had fun together. A pastor from the south of Serbia joined us for the first time with his wife and daughter and he said he enjoyed every minute of the camp. Over the years, this retreat has given us a chance to make new friendships and partnerships for our other programmes.
For the first time, we held EXPO in partnership with the Baptist Theological School (BTS). It was basically a mixture of our SBT programme and TNT. There were 15 (mostly) young people, either BTS students or pastors from churches near Novi Sad. BTS does not typically offer such practical workshops and this was a great addition to the education they offer. It was a pleasure for us, the students and the school staff. It is always so encouraging to hear participants at such events say that they will never take preaching lightly from now on. Many of the students would like to continue exploring this kind of preaching and we are already thinking about a possible winter school of expository preaching. Here are some photos from the event.
This is a group of 18 (mostly) Roma pastors and young apprentices who we’re training to teach the Bible. This time we went through the Gospel of Mark. It usually takes about two years to notice growth in pastors and this is exactly the point we are at with these Roma pastors. The group began two years ago and now many of them are committed to preaching the word as it is, in its context. This is huge since many of these pastors confess to have previously preached their own thoughts and ideas, or ‘however the Holy Spirit led them’ at the moment. We have chosen five potential future trainers from the group. These will be our core team and we’ll mentor them with the goal of them becoming future leaders and teachers in the south of Serbia. The goal of this programme is transformation through training and multiplication by working with others. More photos here.
This area of our ministry keeps expanding. God has been so gracious as to allow us to partner with organisations like Crossway, 9Marks, DesiringGod, The Gospel Coalition and The Good Book Company. We translate and publish many of their books without having to pay high royalties and are even sponsored by some of them. We are publishing three new books this month and we are also in the process of translating The Trellis and the Vine, Paul Tripp’s Suffering, as well as Carson and Moo’s Introducing the New Testament.
At the beginning of September our church sent us out with another married couple to plant a church in Petrovaradin, which is part of Novi Sad. Igor and Renata were part of our apprenticeship programme for five years, after which they chose to plant a church. Igor is leading this and we will be helping them. With our daughter Ivona there are five of us in the church plant (pictured at top of page). We are meeting as a home group and plan to eventually meet somewhere else as we hopefully grow. Please pray for this church plant.
Our daughter has started going to nursery on 1 September and she has, so far, done it joyfully and with no problems. We have also finally managed to buy a new ministry car, which is a VolksWagen Passat produced in 2012. We are very thankful to God for that!
Thank you for your Gospel partnership!
Riste and Tea Micev, Project Timothy.
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Chris and Lotta Strajnic – who helped set-up Project Timothy – share about the early days of the ministry and how now, 20 years down the line, the team has reached a small milestone.
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