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The Pastor’s Piece – March 13, 2022

The Pastor’s Piece

FCFI

March 13, 2022

In last week’s column, I wrote about how our church got involved with helping Ukraine refugees escape the war zone of their country and find sanctuary at a Bible camp in Romania. That story continues today with the following diary entries by me.

March 8, 2022

Dear Martintown Family,

We have some new developments in the Ukraine refugee situation. Following is the message sent from Romania last night: 

Good evening,

Tonight the children that were housed at our camp have headed to Germany. Kyiv authorities surprised us and responded positively to the invitation of a humanitarian organization in Germany. On the one hand we are sad that the children have moved on, but on the other hand we are happy that we helped our fellow men at the right time.

Our friends in Ukraine have asked us to understand the instability of the times and to remain open for future acceptance of refugees. 

Thank you so much for your massive support these days. Not just us but them too.

From Pastor Kevin:

At present, they are cleaning the facilities and have already been contacted by another group of children that they are prepared to take in. 

They have done their due diligence in assuring that the authorities who came actually had the authority they claimed to have. They went to the embassy to validate all the paperwork, including the signatures, and the people involved to make sure it was all legitimate. This is exhausting work, but they are on top of it.

When I received this news, I immediately went to the Lord in prayer. I did not like the fact that “our” children were being moved. But while I was praying, I sensed God’s peace come over me. The people on the ground in Romania have mentioned that in these times of war, it is difficult to predict what will happen next, but their heart is to do God’s work as God sends it to them.  And knowing their heart, and recalling how God moved last week to bring us into this project with them, we know that just because those kids moved on, our engagement to the Lord’s calling is not less. 

We answered His call without regard to how it would turn out so we are being faithful to His calling and trusting Him for the outcome.

The work will continue – just with different recipients and will result in even more individuals being touched by the love of Jesus. 

These are exciting times we live in and I’m excited that God has called us to be directly involved in this ministry! We continue to stand in awe of our God and Savior who holds the whole world in His hands. 

March 10, 2022

The latest news from Romania concerning the refugees from Ukraine – They have welcomed another group of 53 people to their “house” at the mission. This group consists of children, moms, and widows. The men in Ukraine are fighting the war and the women and children are evacuating to safety. The staff at the mission expect this group to stay much longer than the last group, but like before, war has no rules and it’s a very fluid situation and can change daily. They want to help in any way they can. They love that we are praying for them and are thankful for our financial assistance. Praise the Lord!

Back here in the states, life goes on as usual, but our hearts have been moved by the casualties of this war. We pray for the children who have been affected first hand by these atrocities – and the moms and grandmothers. We pray for the men fighting for their freedom and defending their country in Ukraine. We pray that the world leaders will band together and stop Vladimir Putin from this madness. We pray, “Thy Kingdom come, Thy will be done, on earth as it is in Heaven.” 

On another note, I’d like to take this opportunity to invite you to our Easter services at Martintown Community Church on April 17, 2022. Our annual sunrise service will be held at 6:30 a.m. at 10382 W Wire Rd, Winslow, Illinois. This is a beautiful service where we reenact that first Easter morning from the Book of John, chapter 20, complete with music and live narration. Our hosts do a wonderful job of preparing the landscape to set the scenery. God does the rest with a beautiful sunrise which we figure is much like it was that first Easter Sunday morning. 

After the sunrise service we will travel to Martintown Community Church for our regular 8 o’clock service, Sunday school at 9:30 and then our 10:30 service. The messages will be in progression, meaning they will build on each other as we go (in other words – three separate messages), but they will also be independent of each other should you only make it to one or two of the services. If you don’t already have a place to worship, we invite you to take the scenic drive to Martintown, Wisconsin and join us for vibrant, enthusiastic worship of our Risen Lord. 

May God’s richest blessings be yours.

(Kevin Cernek is Lead Pastor of Martintown Community Church in Martintown, Wisconsin)