The Music and Sport Marathon

Tula3The Music and Sport Marathon held in favor of healthy living and life without drugs had been conducted by the Culture, Youth Policy and Sports Committee of the city Alexin.

Igor Baranchikov had six concerts in various sport youth camp as a part of this Marathon. Each concert was attended by 250-400 people. Children and teenagers from both regular and troubled families age 5 to 18 came to listen to his songs.

The main topic touched during the concerts was life without drugs, but we also talked about being spiritually healthy and about having a good life in the future.

First part of each concert was more oriented to teenagers, and was called детство_4Standstill, the second part  called Detstvo (Childhoodwas mainly for children.

The musical program Detstvo is intended for children from five to sixteen years old.

The program consists of eleven songs:

Сохраненное изображение 2013-8-3_22-5-47.217– songs of favorite cartoon characters (Kikoriki, Maya the Bea, Kyzya the House-spirit)

– songs about toys (Teddy bear, Donkey the Shorty)

– thematic songs (New Year, birthday, childhood)

– songs about friendship and motherland

All of the songs are easy to sing which gives children a chance to participate in the program, i.e. to sing with the author himself.

Photo and video materials that are meant for kids are used in the program. The Igor Baranchikov and Igor SavichСprogram is being used with success in orphanages, foster homes and shelters.

Concordia Foundation’s literature was given out during the concerts; also an invitation to join the Correspondence Bible Courses. Starting September first Igor plans to go to various orphanages in Tula Region, so having some children’s literature would be very helpful for him during these trips.

Flat Tires

During the last watch of the night the Lord looked down from the pillar of fire and cloud at the Egyptian army and threw it into confusion. He jammed the wheels of their chariots so that they had difficulty driving. And the Egyptians said, “Let’s get away from the Israelites! The LORD is fighting for them against Egypt.” (Exodus 14:24-25)5012-15

A little over a hundred years passed since man took up an iron horse. The form of this “chariot” has been dramatically changing since the time the first car was made up until the modern time. And the history of chariots extends back over thousands of years — during which time millions of conceivable and inconceivable stories took place.

These stories were told by the coachers and drivers to one another and to all

those who were willing to listen to such stories. Drivers who are believers can tell you how the Lord keeps them safe throughout the journey. But sometimes we, drivers, become like those chariot riders who were pressing forward to do some evil. And then the Lord takes away our wheels like he did with the Pharaoh’s army that was pursuing the Israelites so that they could’n go on.

On a winter evening I received a call from one of my parishioners. She used to complain about her son driving too fast, and about his other sins. This time it wasn’t just a telephone call it was a plea for help, “Pastor, please come and help us….” When a conversation starts with such a plea it automatically tunes you up to a troublesome mode. She told me where their car got broken and asked me to come help fix it. To tell you the truth, I am not the best mechanic, but it was clear to me that I needed to go, especially since Natalia wanted me to meet her son Dennis for quite a while now and he studiously avoided it.

His thinking was that the only thing that a church pastor was capable of was to preach morals at him. When I arrived to the place they told me what had happened. On their way home they got a flat tire.

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Usually, in a situation like this you just take out the spare tire and replace the flat one. But their case was more complicated: while changing the flat tire they realized that there was one more tire that went flat, and they only had one spare tire. I suggested that we take the flat tires and go to a car-service place. Natalia decided to stay in their cat while Dennis and I put the broken tires into the trunk of my car and went on to look for a place where we, during the Christmas holidays, would be able to find a person to help us. We had plenty of time to talk about what had just happened and about his relationships with his mother, and about God’s way of working in any circumstances.

Our conversation was long, and it also wasn’t an easy one. He didn’t want to listen to the moral-preaching and I didn’t want to preach tо him. So I just gave him a chance to get it all out of his system. It was rather difficult for him since he wasn’t prepared to talk — he thought that he would just silently listen to my preaching. From our conversation I saw that his mother planted some seeds of God’s Word into his heart, but he was trying to refuse those seeds.

Dennis heard of God’s love — he read about it in those brochures that his mother brought home from church—but in his heart he was fighting God thinking that God would never be able to put a barrier in front of him. The accident with two flat tires made him think that God is indeed capable of stopping him.

When we finally were able to fix the tires I though that our conversation is over, but God had his own plans. We faced the next trial: their car’s battery died. Using some wires from my car we were able to “raise the battery from the dead” and the car was running again. In the same way the Lord through His Gospel and His Sacraments brings us back to life — that was the lesson that Dennis got to experience. Several months later he asked his mother to bring him a Bible to read. The Lord brought to a stop Dennis’s downfall and began to restore him.

Dear Heavenly Father, you put boundaries to the human wickedness  approaching people through the trials in their lives. By Your Holy Spirit help us all to endure through the temporary difficulties, and not only that, but through them to come to the Source of live which is Jesus Christ. Amen.

In Christ,

Fyodor Tulyinin

Fyodor Tulyinin, pastor of a Lutheran Church in Pushkin since 2003.

Pastor Fyodor helped with organizing Equipping the Saints seminars, with giving out flyers about the Correspondence Bible Courses, and in creating the series of video-lessons on the Basics of Christian Faith ( http://www.gtgold.ru).

The Interview with Elena Sokolova

This is how Elena Sokolova explains why she decided to write her stories.

???????????????????????????????«”My heart hurts for my nation…” After the tragic death of Alexander Men, one of the Christians in the US said about people in Russian – “It is easier to share Jesus Christ with savages than with you. You are… educated kind…”

I was shocked to read such a correct diagnosis of my people’s condition. I grew up in this country among educated people, and I know the language that their hearts speak and understand.

All my conscience life I grieved thinking of how my fellow countrymen, though they reach the summits of science and education, were not educated spiritually, were deprived of pastoral care and had no access to the Bible.

And even nowadays due to the negative propaganda of Christianity and bad attitude towards them we still have hard time finding the real faith. The main goal of my stories and tales is to soften the hearts and minds of people, help them to go back to that place in their hearts where they can still hear God’s voice through His creation, through silence, through a dream, through coming in СПб 019Stouch with sincere people.

So many children are being born today! And parents have no idea which way to direct them. So I am trying to help, trying to turn the light on so that at least some will take the road leading to Jesus Christ, and others might at least mock Christians not as often and this would already lessen the sin».

I would like to add that her stories are influencing those who read them or listen to them —they are like a gulp of fresh cold water in the desert… in our spiritual desert! Elena Sokolova’s works contain very important Biblical truth teaching its readers to treat other people’s opinions, even when they differ from theirs, with respect since other people are also valuable to their Creator.

I am hope that our audience becomes purer; it doesn’t see God as an abstract any longer, and moral welfare of our society is getting a bit better.

Igor Savich

Cooperation with the Youth for Christ Mission

Concordia Foundation continues its cooperation with the Youth for Christ Mission. Next year this Mission is planning to conduct several projects, and the YFC 1SFoundation wants to participate in them. These would be the following events:

– Three-day forum for youth ministers: one in October 2013 and another one February 2014. The main focus of these forums is to train leaders to be able to minister to young people. Such training sessions usually gather up to 50 youth leaders. Two to three clubs for adolescence usually get launched on the basis of churches in St. Petersburg and as a result of this training.

– A youth Conference in the spring of 2014.YFC 2S

This Conference will be focused on teenagers from 12 to 17 years old—the main goal of the event will be to get them acquainted with the Creator of the Universe from an early age. Also, the Conference will serve as a means to set a model of youth ministry for the church ministers.

– Children’s evangelization in July of 2014.

During this month, a team of missionaries will travel to about ten towns with a specific program which will include some social help activities, entertaining AYC09iTq_Pk_Sgames and Bible lessons.

Up to one hundred kids who never even heard about God could be present at this event in each of the towns. So Concordia Foundation plans to have its representative in all of them to give out the Foundations books and brochures, and to invite everybody to study basics of the Christian faith through its website.

We have already given our Discussions on Christian Faith course to the Youth for Christ leaders so that they could distribute these lessons during all of their evangelical events, then all those who are interested could begin studying the Bible without a delay.