Wednesday, July 9, 2008
A picture from Voronezh.
Church on Sunday was a great experience. Our group of Americans went to Moscow First UMC. The pastor of this church is Ludmilla Garbuzova. She compiled the Russian UM hymnal, and wrote many of the original songs. The church meets in an elementary school during the school year. During the summer they meet in small groups in peoples' homes.
We went to Ludmilla's home. The service was wonderful. Full of singing and young people. Ludmilla preached with so much expression that the translator was rather unnecesary. After the service we had lunch together.
Before I left we had prayer together for the rest of my trip.
It was one of those perfect moments. They gathered around me. They prayed for me. Ludmilla prayed in Russian. She and I had just discussed the possibility of pushing for a church plant in Konakovo.
"Bless him, Father."
Ludmilla is one of the best Methodist pastors in Russia.
"Use him, Lord."
She has made the Russian Methodist Church a singing church.
"Keep him safe."
Ludmilla's family is from Konakovo and she returns there often and knows many people.
"He is our brother and we love him."
I recommended Katya, a seminary student from Ludmilla's church, as the person to start the new church. I pledged my full support.