Testimony of Nikolai

Testimony of Nikolai

Prior to studying the Bible through the Bible Correspondence Courses I was not a Christian. My grief and helplessness forced me to turn to God, and the Father heard me and I crossed paths with Concordia Foundation. Your lessons helped me to learn about Christian faith, about God, and showed  me the way to Him. I thanks Him for your work in His field.

During my studies with you I found much needed fellowship with brothers and sisters in Christ. I enjoyed every aspect of the lessons; they are useful and instructive for stray sinners. I think that after going through these lessons a person is quite ready to attend a church assembly regularly.

I’ve been serving time in jail since I was 15, and that’s where I am now, in great need of fellowship with brothers and sisters. Right now I am sick with tuberculosis. Please pray for me.

Father God, I praise You for Your children who extended their helping hand  over to me!

Yours,

Nikolai Kyvshinov

01.03.2012

Pancake Festival

With the support of Concordia Foundation, a celebration of  Pancake Festival took place in a music club Da:Da. A folk group Otava Yo participated in this celebration.

The Pancake Festival is a traditional Russian holiday celebrated by all people regardless of their attitude toward Christianity. This Festival had always been a very joyful holiday, and since the Lent started right after it, it was the last chance for people to have fun.

Otava Yo musicians tried their best to perform in the spirit of this holiday, alternating their songs with some folk dances.

Lots of young people and young couples with small children were present at the Festival. All,  both old and young without exception, participated in jolly dances. The leader of the music group himself taught the audience various dance figures. To everyone’s amusement the following dances were performed: Russian quadrille, Latvian folk dance, and a funny dance Piggy in Buckwheat.

Around two hundred people came to celebrate this holiday.

The leader and the mastermind of the group, Alexei Belkin, turned everybody’s attention to leaflets that had information about Concordia Foundation’s activities. These leaflets were set next to pancakes – food traditional for this Festival. Thus, all those who were present had a chance to combine the useful with the pleasant: to both have fun and learn more about Concordia Foundation, and also to sign up for the Bible Correspondence Courses.

Seminar on Equipping the Saints

Another seminar on Equipping the Saints was held. It took place in a Lutheran Parish of St. Peterburg in a village of Malye Kolpuny. The history of this temple is very dramatic. For one thing, the village is located just over a mile away from Gatchina where emperor Paul once built his country palace.

One time he got lost while hunting in the woods not far from the palace; rooster’s crow helped him to come out to a small house of a ranger. In 1800, to commemorate his rescue, the emperor built a Lutheran church. Why did he built a Lutheran church? The legend says that he fell in love with the ranger’s daughter who was a Finn.

During the Soviet times the church was closed and a factory  was built on its territory. The factory operates even today, so when we came to visit the church on Sunday we first had to go through the factory’s guard desk (which was quite easy) and only then did we see a big beautiful brick building of the church in the yard. Though the building is a landmark of federal significance, it has not been repaired.

Worship services take place in a small part of the building which was restored by the church members. Both before and after the service, Igor – a member of the church – climbs the bell tower and rings the bells.

This time he invited us to come up with him and stand by while he rang the bells. The sound spread far; we were really impressed.

When we came down from the bell tower we walked through various rooms piled with trash and in need of quick restoration in order for the temple to be able to function in full force and effect.

Pastor Alexander Soity was very glad to see us. He let us use the assembly hall to conduct our seminar. Members of the church who stayed for the seminar, were very interested to hear about methods of spreading the Good News.

We had lots of presentations and discussions. Materials concerning Islam sparked great interest among the people. Mainly married couples were present at the seminar – that gave our seminar some specific coloring.

We brought our brochures to leave with the church, including the brochure on family relationships. We are hoping that our visit gave the church a new motivation in sharing the Good News of Jesus Christ.