In Podgorica, Montenegro, the Evangelical church Word of God has purchased land on which we plan to build a new church building and ministry center. This page has information related to that project. Donations can be made on our Support Page; choose MNE: “Word of God” Building Fund from the drop-down menu.
For concise information about the project, click here to download the Brochure.
To provide a space recognized as a meeting place for Evangelical believers, which also serves as a center for training, refreshing and sending those who serve throughout Montenegro for the sake of spreading the Gospel.
Visible Expression of Evangelicals in the Country
We have learned that Montenegrins are sensitive regarding the visible expression of a religious meeting place. A public, official, facility is very important because it shows transparency, dedication and stability. With a recognizable building for Evangelical church meetings, believers would communicate to the culture that they are “serious”.
With this building we are targeting few areas:
- Meeting Place for the Church. The Evangelical Church Word of God has outgrown it’s current rented facility, and the growth continues.
- Expanded Children’s Ministry. Each week, as many as 13 families with a total of 32 children up to age 10 attend services.
- Shared Ministry Offices. Word of God collaborates with several mission organizations which would have their own “corner” as office space.
- Mission Center. Dedicated to training and refreshing missionaries who are sent throughout Montenegro.
- Lodging for Visiting Teams. Through the year the church welcomes short mission teams to serve in many ways. It is difficult to host teams larger than 4-5 people. With our new facility we could host up to 15 people.
Below is a picture of the land purchased in August 2017. It is in a very good location, close to downtown on the Moraca River. Several old buildings were on the land: a small house, and recently we demolished an unfinished shell and some outbuildings. The house will soon also be demolished to make way for new construction.
Architects in Slovakia and Estonia are donating services to design a four story building of 880 square meters (9,500 sq/ft). Here is a preliminary design:
Before 1990, there were no Evangelical believers in Montenegro. The first long-term missionary to Montenegro was a Pentecostal believer from Novi Sad, Serbia. In 1992, Vladimir Cizmanski and Zholt Bico came as missionaries to plant a church. Vladimir now pastors Word of God Church, the fellowship he planted many those years ago.
Early on, Evangelicals were viewed as a sect and a cult, but times changed and people became more open and curious about beliefs other than Eastern Orthodoxy.
Now, we enjoy religious freedom and want to use this opportunity to build a good reputation and be accepted within the culture.
Today, of the 300 believers in Montenegro only 60 are native Montenegrins. Of the eight registered Evangelical churches in the country only one owns their own building. Yet, even that is viewed as a family home and not as a church.
Budget and Phases
Phase I: Purchase Land
Completed! With €150,000 ($180,000) donated by an English charity, the purchase was finalized in August 2017. This big step is a great confirmation from the Lord that He is in the work. We are so thankful to God that we had opportunity to buy land for the future facility.
Phase II: Drying In
Building the shell, by professionals, to the stage of having a roof on the building. Estimated Cost: about €150,000 ($180,000). Funds have been raised for this phase and we are in the process of getting building permits from the city! (August 2019)
Phase III: Finishing
Because there are gifted craftsmen in the church, much of the labor would be donated. Estimated cost for Materials and Labor: €200,000 ($240,000). As of September, 2019, we need €75,000 ($84,000).
You can read an earlier update about the land purchase here.