Tuesday, April 28, 2015

April 2015

Spring in Siberia.... means very high winds, cold nights, and sometimes warm days...sometimes. You just have to remember that spring will arrive and in the blink of an eye, the trees will bud and blossom, grass will turn green, and the first flowers of the year will bloom! (We're still waiting) As Laura began writing this update, a forest fire started outside of our town. You could the smoke for miles! There was concern at one point it would come too close because of high winds. Many prayers were raised, the wind changed direction, rain fell - all was well by the end of the day!

Where do you celebrate your birthday? Most people have a meal with friends or their spouse; some go on a weekend getaway to relax. We like to do things a bit differently....not certain if this is a plus but we often have conferences somewhere in the world around the same time Laura's birthday rolls around. That was just the case this year...Moscow in March! We had a day on each end of our time there to just meet with folks or see something we hadn't seen before. We will admit, we never visited St. Basil's Cathedral when we lived in Moscow. (Honestly,we never wanted to pay the tourist price...now the price is all the same.) We also visited Catherine II's summer palace with some friends before heading back to Ulan Ude. Our conference?...very informative and as always it was wonderful re-connecting with folks we haven't seen in several years from across Russia. All in all, a great birthday!!
St. Basil's Cathedral, Red Square, Moscow.

                                   The following are pictures from inside the cathedral......

for sure worth the money to see this amazing Church...

Summer Palace of Catherine II of Russia.......

The Amber Room...AMAZING!

The beginning of this month brought much warmer weather, (although it doesn't appear so in the pictures); our warmer weather allows the fellowship to have 'work days'. Always necessary after a long winter so that we can rake the property, collect garbage that blows everywhere, and start preparations for summer and winter. (more wood) Everyone got involved this year, even our little ones, making the building and outside on the property ready for Palm and Easter Sundays.

Cleaning the new property

Notice the Green House on the right...well with high winds...UGH...
it got blown over, total loss...

Just might not have a greenhouse this year??!!

Even the younger ones helped!

A meal was cooked for all the workers.
Getting started for the coming winter with the needed firewood.

Our celebration this year was filled with folks sharing favorite verses, poems they had written, and the youth decided to present a skit sharing the Gospel. They did an incredible job and included everyone that wanted to be a part of the skit. Even Max played a part and was able to 'say' his lines with just a little help! Their message was clear...Jesus died on a cross, He rose like he said He would! HE IS RISEN!!  Invitations had also been given to friends and neighbors which resulted in almost 60 in attendance! Anyone who has ever visited our fellowship will attest to the love and acceptance when they walk through the doors. Come as you are and allow Jesus to change your life! 

A dance of praise for the risen King!

A grandmother encourages her grandaughter to share a verse. 

Very  clear message on Easter...

Awesome to see a full sanctuary! 

Summer is just around the corner, which means lots of work to do outside. Please pray for opportunities to meet folks and 'lend a hand' to those in need. Remember the folks here as prices continue to rise and salaries do not. The average monthly salary was approximately $200; now that has become $120 - 150 per month. Although Russians are true survivors, they still need a savior! As the fellowship grows; we are encouraged with the growth in numbers and a sincere desire to grow in their knowledge of Him! Keep them in prayer.

Blessings,  Kevin & Laura

"God knows our situation; He will not judge us as if we had no difficulties to overcome. What matters is the sincerity and perseverance of our will to overcome them."    C.S. Lewis