It is privilege to write to you about our Spring Academy that we just completed. We studied from April 16th to the 20th on the topic of Systematic Theology. We had 15 students ministering and serving churches from all over Turkey. We even had one brother from Bulgaria. All of these men are actively serving as pastors, or are on their way to becoming church leaders. Our instructor, Dr. Tim Trumper, was kind enough to come to Turkey and paid his own travel expenses to serve among us.
We followed a course of study planned and organized by Dr. Trumper. We used J.I. Packer’s Concise Theology as our textbook. This book was available for us in Turkish from a previous publication by Via Christus. We also provided each student with a booklet containing an outline to serve as a resource and guide for taking notes. During the week, we gathered for about 5 hours each day to study, discuss and learn from the Word of God. We were also privileged to be able to visit the historical sites, of Side and Attalia and enjoy meals together. At the completion of the class, our students shared their words of encouragement with us. One of the pastors specifically expressed that he had suffered from really hard year with pressure and stress caused by death threats. He saw this week as a breath of fresh air and he was encouraged to press on during hard days. Another brother wrote back to us and said, “ the lectures were encouraging, educational and challenging”.
Please remember us in your prayers, specifically for the protection for our leaders. Satan targets the leaders first and most of them live under continuous pressure and death threats. This discourages leaders to continue on, since most of them do not have elders in their churches to support them and share in the work. So ministry in Turkey is not just challenging since persecution is possible, but often lonely as well. Pray for security, encouragement and also for boldness for my brothers here, so that they can keep declaring the gospel.
We praise the Lord and encourage you to join us. A few years ago we were not able to train and encourage leaders for ministry in our country. Although there are some educational institutions in the land, most of them are general. God has been kind enough to bring us some of the most humble and qualified scholars in the world to serve us. We praise and give thanks to the Lord for all the financial provisions as well. It helps us so that we can press on.
We appreciate and thank you for your support and care. Grace and peace be to you all.
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