First of all, we’ve been travelling hither and thither during all this year. I would say nothing if I say we are tired and sick of it. Things are messing up, memories are mixing and it’s hard to remember where we were at some particular month and what we’re doing. Besides that, all our things are spread between two places and often it’s hard to realize where this particular thing is – in Polyarny or in Vadsø. That is pretty exhausting. And of course, this temporary stay in Vadsø doesn’t make much change. We must solve it as soon as possible.
Today we are in Russia again because we faced some trouble with the papers we have prepared for the residency application. To fix them we had to go back to Russia.
The last couple of months we spent mostly in Vadsø. Here’s what we did:
1. Sunday service: preaching for children (a separate 5-10 min message with illustrations) and adults (a 30 min message according to the year plan with some deviations possible).
2. Youth ministry: meeting with the teenagers in our (church) apartment, meeting with their mothers (yes, they only have mothers), a 2 day trip with the boys is scheduled for next week. Larger plans are being developed. I had a meeting with YWAM leader of Northern Norway, we agreed that they send a team to Vadsø before Christmas to help establish work with the youth.
3. Music ministry: I learned four songs, two in English and two in Norwegian and we started singing it in the church during worship. before that we didn’t have any organized worship. I keep learning songs with more attention on Norwegian ones. Praying for musicians to come!
4. Personal ministry: we visited an elderly couple (Norwegian), a Norwegian man, a family. Talked with them about their life and problems, prayed for them.
5. Prayer ministry: led prayer meetings twice a week.
6. Helped a team from Finland to come and do some outreach for the muslims in the city. Provided lodging for them, organized their visit.
7. Helped a team from Southern Norway, led by the former pastor of this church. Drove them around, helped organize their schedule.
8. Inter church communication: attended a Finnmark pastor’s meeting (first of a kind), where we discussed the Finnmark conference, which we haven’t had here since early 80s. ( I write ‘we’ on purpose, considering myself a finnmarker).
Basically, that’s what it was. Now we are in Russia, trying to verify and translate all papers we have to apply, and to do it as quickly as possible. We paid the application fees, which are 10400NOK for me and 5300Nok for Masha (about USD1500 total), now we need only to get the papers ready, book an appointment in the Police station in Vadsø, hand in the papers and wait for their decision and keep doing the job in the church.
Please pray for our application process. Divine intervention is needed here indeed. Please pray for us, we need strength to complete this.
Thank you for your support. We do appreciate your prayers.
Yura and Masha