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News From OFWBs in Bulgaria



"And we know that for those who love God, all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose" (Romans 8:28).


Before the end of 2024 and after the coming of Dr. Kiril Svilenov to OFWB Varna, Bulgaria, we knew that God, in his infinite mercy, would make His church flourish. Bulgaria has three main ethnic groups, Bulgarian, Turkish, and Roma, and they are divided by their language and region. 


We are grateful that, through you, God is using us to declare the gospel and His incomparable love to all ethnic groups, for we are sent to proclaim freedom to the captives, healing to the sick, and salvation to the lost.


The Sunday congregation and Wednesday Bible study meetings are of mixed ethnicity, but all understand and speak Bulgarian. For those that the Lord has touched, but speak Turkish or Roma through our fieldwork, we visit separately during the week having homegroups in their area. God is opening the hearts of the people and younger generation for Jesus, as more than 90 percent of the community are Muslim.


One of the challenges we often have is to find a voluntary translator so that they can correctly catch all we are willing to share with them and open their understanding more about the Word of God. 


My wife Elisaveta (daughter of the late pastor Kosta)  is taking time with the kids each time we go to teach them Bulgarian writing and speaking so that they can have a good start for school that is in Bulgarian language. Many that come lately are widows, orphans, and kids whose parents are addicted to drugs. The hygiene there is in bad condition as the government does not provide drinkable water in those Roma/gypsy villages, and the consequences are obvious. With the help of Dr. Kiril we were able to bless them with lots of clothes, shoes, and household items during the Christmas period. 


The atmosphere of joy and children having wide-open smiles is making the ground even more blessed for the seed of faith to enter their hearts and change the region.

We held two conferences at the beginning of 2024 for the Varna region, with more than 180 people attending Christian events. We were amazed that the church was full and people were standing in the corridors of the building. During the altar call, many received Jesus as their Lord and Savior. Glory be to God!


Two weeks ago, being in a rush, I burned my right hand palm at home. At first, I didn't think it would be so serious, but after a few minutes, I realized what had happened and rushed to the emergency at midnight. They confirmed that the injury had affected my two fingers deeply and that I would be required to be hospitalized for a week or two so that they could check me daily and then be under treatment for a month or two. They even mentioned that an operation would be required as a nerve and a muscle is affected. I didn't expect that the situation would escalate to such a state. After trying to move my fingers on my own when changing the bandage, I realized that I could not.


Yes, I did panic for a minute or two. Anyway, I didn't have the possibility of being hospitalized or having free checks, so we took care of it at home with the help of my wife and prayers. I didn't now allow what I heard by the doctors to rest in my mind and heart and I believed that God would shorten the healing process as this was not expected to happen as I have to take care of church activities, family, and other daily staff too.

 

Now, the wound is closing very fast, and I am able to move my fingers. At the moment, we are praying to regain strength in my fingers.  I know that this will encourage me and others in similar future situations where healing is needed.


We are praying for God to continue using your ministry in such a precious way all over the globe. We encourage all intercessors and members that God's strength, love and grace is felt right here in this ministry through your daily prayers. Our prayers and thoughts are with you!

 

—Pastor Mitko Marinov, Varna, Bulgaria

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