The church in Gyergyo is growing! Four men were baptized last month (Pastor Zsolt is on the far right).
We personally know two of these men since they have been long-time attenders of the church. One of them, Csongi, was so gracious with driving us to our honeymoon after our wedding. His car got stuck in a ditch on the way there and he worked tirelessly to get help in a mountainous village so that we could get to our honeymoon location. We are so grateful that our friend has made this public profession of faith! He has a servant’s heart and you can usually find him with a smile on his face.
Istvan is another friend who has been hesitant to get baptized over the years. In Szekely culture, believer’s baptism is seen as denying the baptism you received as an infant in the Roman Catholic tradition and akin to denying your ethnicity as Hungarian. Traditional Szekely families become very upset over a decision like that, and this is why Istvan was previously so cautious over this decision. Istvan regards the Lord’s opinion of him over and above any discouraging opinions from those around him. Praise God that he looks to Christ instead and is now baptized!
Here in the USA, we have had a fruitful time support-raising, covering thousands of miles zig-zagging across the country. It has brought us joy to reconnect with old friends, share our heart for ministry in Romania, and even introduce our kid to to theirs. In fact, these trips have made Genevieve a fan of road trips and more social than she has ever been before.
Genevieve continues to add more words to her vocabulary, including “amen” and “Jesus,” which makes us delighted and proud!
Karina is officially in the second trimester of pregnancy and we found out that we’re having a son! We will name him Josiah Tithe Starnes (might be a mouthful for Hungarians!)
On August 24, we celebrated our second wedding anniversary. We are in awe of God’s faithfulness throughout these two years of marriage and are so excited for the future years together to come. We’re also overjoyed to serve and return to the same place we got married in just a few weeks (October).
- Karina has an ultrasound and anatomy scan for baby Josiah on September 10. Please pray for a continued healthy pregnancy, baby, and delivery!
- Genevieve’s Hungarian birth certificate still hasn’t arrived in the mail. Pray that it arrives before we leave in October.
- Getting plugged into community for us in Gyergyo, grace and quick development for Jacob as he learns Hungarian, a smooth transition for Genevieve moving to a whole new place, and wisdom for Jacob as he leads our family.
Jacob and Karina will serve the church in Gyergyószentmiklós, Romania: