Thursday, March 8, 2018

Jonathan and Kristy's update 3/6/2018


Thank you for your prayers for us these past weeks. We are all doing well. We had our coldest weather this past week, as it got down to -2 F. Thankfully, this week is supposed to be warmer, with no more below-freezing temperatures.

Our Tuesday night Bible studies continue to go very well. I’ve been doing some special music sometimes for them, and we’ve been enjoying the fellowship and opportunities for discipleship and spiritual growth. We’ve been discussing a lot about the Jehovah’s Witnesses’ beliefs through our studies, and there are so many verses that show that a lot of their beliefs are false. Gina’s daughter is studying with the Jehovah’s Witnesses (she doesn’t live in the country), so Gina appreciates having these verses to give to her daughter and hopefully help her see the truth. Lusi (Lucy) attended our last Bible study, which was great. She learns spiritual truths quickly, and we pray that she will come faithfully and grow in the Lord.

The teens have been pretty awful. There have been a lot of them coming, but most of the time, one or more people are talking or laughing through the whole class. There is just no order in the class, and we often have to send some of them out. Thankfully, this last Sunday, it went very well. There were few distractions, so that was a wonderful blessing. We played a game afterwards and I’ve never seen them play so well. Normally fighting breaks out after about 5 seconds of a game! :o) It was a very pleasant surprise, and I hope it happens again! The attached picture is from one of our teen classes. The picture only shows about half the teens that were there.

Mariana, one of our faithful ladies in the church, has been told she has to move very soon; probably in the next few days. The person who owns the property their house is on wants to build on it or sell it. I think part of their property is also on state-owned land, and the street is supposed to be where part of their house is. Please pray that God would provide a place for them close to the church.

The school classes with the children have been well-attended, and slowly but surely, the children are learning. It is exciting to see them grasp things!

We would appreciate your prayers as we get ready for Baby’s arrival! Thank you for your interest and prayers for us and our ministry, and for helping to give God’s Word to the Gypsies in Romania!

In His service,
Jonathan, Kristy, and Cory

Thursday, February 15, 2018

Jonathan and Kristy's update 02/09/2018


„But God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty;” I Corinthians 1:27


After 3 months of extra responsibilities with our co-workers gone, we are so grateful they have returned from furlough! We decided to have a week where we kept things at a slower pace and relaxed a bit. It was a blessing to be able to get some refreshing times after all the busy-ness! We are now battling colds that are going around, and Cory seems to have gotten the worst of it. On our week off, we decided to take some sessions at a therapeutic salt room in the city to try to boost our immune systems. This gave us an opportunity to witness to a mother who brought her little boy there. It is important to remember that even if you’re not a missionary, God still wants you to share His good news with those around you! Please pray that we would be healthy so that we can do the work God has called us to do. We would appreciate your prayers for Kristy and the baby also, who is due March 20th!

A few weeks ago, we decided to start having our Tuesday night services at some of the houses of the ladies that come to church. Their church attendance was less and less, so we decided to take the church to them. :o) They were very happy to have us study the Bible in their homes, and we have been enjoying these times of fellowship and discipleship. This allows us to make a fire in just one room at the church building for the children’s classes on Tuesdays. These continue to be well-attended, and often some of the teens like to sit in the children’s classes on Tuesdays. Ion (Yone), Mariana’s husband, has been staying at the church to help keep an eye on things during the children’s class. Usually the kids are much better behaved with him around, so that has been a blessing! Please keep praying that Ion will be saved!

English classes at Casa Rafa (Cossa Roffa) are starting up again next week, so we appreciate your prayers for our English classes. Kristy has been teaching English to David, Gina’s grandson, Rebeca, Gina’s niece, and a neighbor girl every Saturday. We are grateful for the chance to reach out to these children too, and pray that God will work in their lives through us.

Some of the teen classes these past few weeks have been quite full. The other week, there were about 20 teens! We had to switch rooms with the children’s class, as that room is bigger and could fit all of us. They were quite a rowdy bunch, and it was hard to get a word in with all their talking and loudness, but after several of them left, it quieted down a bit. I pray that God will work in the hearts of these young people. I don’t know what their purpose is in coming. It often seems they come just to cause a ruckus and make fun. In any case, they are being exposed to God’s Word, and He can make that seed sown to grow.

Thank you for your interest and prayers for our ministry, and for helping to spread God’s Word to the Gypsies in Romania!

In His service,
Jonathan, Kristy, and Cory

Sunday, January 14, 2018

Jonathan and Kristy's update 1/08/2018


„But God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty;” I Corinthians 1:27

We had a wonderful holiday season as we particularly remembered the miraculous birth of our Savior! My parents were in the States for a week with my oldest brother and his family for Christmas, so we spent the day by ourselves, and read the passage in the Bible about Jesus’ birth. Though some do not celebrate Christmas because of its origins, I think it is still a good idea to take time and be reminded of the wonders and blessings of Christ’s birth, no matter what day it is!

There was a week or two recently when no teens showed up at church, but other weeks, we had a bunch of them come. To my amazement, one week, one of the boys who is usually terribly behaved was perfect! I didn’t hear a peep out of him the whole service. A few weeks ago, Sara was hanging out with a guy, but Mariana told us that she isn’t with him anymore. Sara came to church this past Sunday, and was very attentive and even asking questions about the lesson. Please keep praying that she will live for the Lord!

The children have been coming to the children’s classes also. This past Tuesday, there were about 20 of them!

With my parents in the States, I had the opportunity to preach a few times. It is always nice to be able to fellowship with some of the adults. We were very glad to see Lusi (Lucy), Gina’s daughter-in-law, come to one of the services recently!

The Gypsies often ask us for things, telling us how poor they are, and our hearts often want to help them. You can see in the attached pictures how “poor” they are. That is in quotes for a reason. We got to talking to some of them, and realized that most (if not all) of them have larger incomes than ours. Just with scrap metal, some of them can make over $100 in a day. Even without that, if a few of them in a household are working a job, they make more than we do. An average household there spends $900 just on cigarettes every month, and probably quite a bit on alcohol! It is no wonder that their shacks look the way they do if they spend almost their whole salary on cigarettes and beer. Anyway, I guess we are ministering to the well-off Gypsies in Romania, and we should be asking them for stuff! ;o) Sometimes I wonder what their reaction would be if I would do that!

A new year is a time to be reminded of the blessings of God in our lives, and to evaluate our goals for the future. Our main goal and focus is to serve and please the Lord in all we do. We know that God has us here ministering to the Gypsies at this time. It can be very disappointing to see just a few saved through our ministry, and many of those have turned away from God. It can also be frustrating when we teach the children and teens the basic truths of salvation month after month, and after years, they still don’t know what to respond when we ask them what sin is! It certainly is a blessing when one of them grasps a spiritual truth! We often feel like Jeremiah, who was called to preach to the rebellious Israelites. God knew they wouldn’t listen, but Jeremiah continued preaching to them, because that was what God wanted. We plan to keep on serving the Gypsies here as long as God wants us to. We do appreciate your prayers for us, and for the Gypsies to be saved and live for the Lord! As we reflect on God’s goodness and mercy to us this past year, we realize that you are a huge part of it! Thank you for your prayers and part in our ministry, and for helping to spread God’s Word to the Gypsies in Romania!

In His service,
Jonathan, Kristy, and Cory

Tuesday, January 2, 2018

Jonathan and Kristy's update 12/06/2017

„But God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty;” I Corinthians 1:27

We had our first snow fall just a few days ago! It is definitely winter here, and this seems to reflect the state of our Gypsies’ hearts. Please pray with us that God will melt the hearts of ice.

There have been a number of teens coming to the teen classes at church. They are often quite a handful (many times they are worse than the children! And I don’t mind telling them so either! Not that it helps anything!). We certainly appreciate your prayers for wisdom and grace in dealing with the teens. Sara continues to hang out with the wrong crowd, but we just keep trying to encourage her to do right. It has been a blessing to be able to talk to some of the teen guys about spiritual things.

There is a German missionary family who helps with a boys’ home here, and they visited our services. They have a real heart and burden for children. It was a blessing to have their 2 girls in our teen class. It’s amazing how well the Word gets communicated when the audience is well-behaved and listening! :o) We had a good time of fellowship with them.

We are continuing our English classes at Casa Rafa (Cossa Roffa). Sometimes the kids are quite naughty (probably if they have eaten chocolate or sweets before English class!), and other times they are good. One week with the older class that I teach, almost all of the children gave me their completed English papers that I handed out. They wanted me to have something to help me remember them. :o) Those are special times that are few and far between, but I will take them anytime! Kristy has also been teaching English to Gina’s grandson and niece, as well as the daughter of one of our neighbors.

We are planning to have at least a few weeks of school (reading and writing) for some of the children in our Gypsy neighborhood who don’t go to school. Our goal is not just to teach them to read so that they can read the Bible, but also to reach their hearts for Christ.

With the Christmas season coming, we pray that people will be more open and receptive to the Gospel. It is our desire to be God’s witnesses to these Gypsies, and we are so grateful for your prayers and support that allow us to do that!

In His service,

Jonathan, Kristy, and Cory
P.S. Just as an FYI for those sending checks in December, CMC (Central Missionary Clearinghouse, which handles our support) needs to receive any checks before December 15th. So, if you want a check to process before the end of the year (for tax purposes), that is helpful to know.

Sunday, December 31, 2017

Jonathan and Kristy's update 11/07/2017


The air has gotten cooler, and we are having below-freezing temperatures at night. We are so grateful to have heat in our whole house this winter!

Speaking of cold nights, last Saturday night, we had a bit of excitement. Our doorbell rang at about 2:30 a.m. and kept ringing. When I unlocked our door and went out, there was a man at our gate holding his head. He said he had had an accident right down the road and asked if I could call the emergency number (112). Apparently, he had lost his phone in the car in the accident. He was bleeding from a gash on his head, so I called 112, and invited him to come in and sit down. He told us there was another person involved in the accident, so after he sat for a minute he mentioned that he wanted to go and see how the other person was. I walked down the road with him and there was the other car with some people who were apparently coming from a wedding. Thankfully, they were all fine. What had happened was a horse was in the road, and the cars swerved to avoid it. The guy with the gash on his head lost control of his car. The ambulance came, and I think everyone was fine. God has ways of trying to get people’s attention! May we always keep our eyes on Him!

Marioara from France has gone back to France. I think they are trying to work out the details of coming back to Romania. Please pray that the Lord would bring back the Milos (Meel-oesh) family to Romania.

The other Sunday, our services went unusually well. There was a great quietness in the children’s class and in the teen class. They were very good and attentive. We praise the Lord for that! Afterwards, some teens came in and were very loud and causing trouble, but thankfully the service was finished. I couldn’t get them out of the church building, so Mariana came and got them out with some yelling and I think some ear-pulling. :o)

We often have visitors come into the teen class, or teens who haven’t been there for a long time. Some like to cause trouble, and others seem to come just to hang out and talk with one of their friends who is there. As much as is possible, when there is a moment or two of (relative) silence, I try to share the message from God’s Word with them. It is often difficult, as there are usually distractions about every 30 seconds! This past Sunday, there were several teens that came. Thankfully, after a few of the disruptive ones left, it went pretty well. I was able to talk to several of the guys afterwards, which hasn’t happened for a while. Normally, when I try to talk to them, they get obnoxious and start yelling or being vulgar. It’s helpful when I can actually have a somewhat normal conversation with them! These teens need prayer! Please pray that more would be saved, and that those who are saved would stay away from bad influences and live for the Lord. The teens seem to love music, so we try to sing a lot, and they love learning new songs too. It is encouraging to remember that the Lord uses His Word in people’s hearts, whether it is being preached or sung!

A couple weeks ago, my sister and brother-in-law, Joanna and Bruce, and their kids came for a visit from Germany. It was a wonderful blessing to spend several days with them!

This past week, there was a missions conference at the Tylers’ church. The Tylers are American missionaries, and we help with some of their services. We enjoyed the preaching and fellowship. You can see the attached picture of the missions conference.

Thank you for your prayers for us, especially as our co-workers are in the US for a couple more months. We are blessed to have you as part of our ministry!

In His service,
Jonathan, Kristy, and Cory

Central Missionary Clearinghouse website:

Our field address:
Str. Mare nr. 113/A
Mosnita Veche, Timis 307287

Saturday, December 30, 2017

Jonathan and Kristy's update 10/09/2017

„But God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty;” I Corinthians 1:27

It seems like this is the time for hurricanes around the world! A couple weeks ago, we had a violent storm come through our area, and we later found out it was a hurricane. We were very fortunate to not have any damage to our house, as many people lost parts of their roofs. A large portion of our fence was damaged, but thankfully, we were able to repair it ourselves. Our shed and our old outhouse (which we were planning to take down) were destroyed, so Ion (Yone), Mariana’s husband, and their son, Alin (Ah-leen), came to take them away with their horse and wagon. At least they will be able to use some of that wood this winter. We are hoping to get a new shed built soon. God has ways of getting people to think about him (hurricanes are one of them!), and the storm gave me the opportunity to witness to our neighbor again. We are very grateful that the Lord kept us safe! Thank you for your prayers for our safety. You may never know sometimes how much we need them! See the attached pictures of some of the damage from the storm, and one of the two rainbows that appeared afterwards, reminding us of God’s promises! You can also visit Kristy's blog to see more pictures and videos: During the Storm and After the Storm.

We had a guest pastor preach at our church a few weeks ago, as he and his wife were in the area. He went around talking to all the Gypsies before the service and telling them to come. We did have several visitors come, and Pastor Remus (Remm-oos) gave a great salvation message. Please continue to pray that the Lord would work in the hearts of the Gypsies here.

Marioara, who is unsaved, came back from France again and said that she never wants to go back. They would like to all move back to Romania, get jobs, and come to church! Please pray that the Lord would work out the details of this. Ion’s (her son) little boy has to be on medication that they are not sure they can get in Romania, so that is a major issue for them. We would love to have them back in our church and serving the Lord!

Sara has been slightly more attentive during some of the teen classes, and we have had several young people come to the teen classes. Last week, two boys, Mario and Dani, were being quite rude and obnoxious before the service. We couldn’t even let them in because they were being so disruptive. Thankfully, the Lord still allows His Word to be heard despite a lot of distractions. We pray His Word will bring forth fruit in the hearts of those that hear it.

Our coworkers, the Freels, are in the US for 3 months so we have a lot more responsibilities in their absence. One issue is that there is not really anyone to guard the building outside during the services to try to keep things relatively quiet. Please pray that the Lord would give us quietness during our services so that His Word can be preached freely.

We had our last school class with the Gypsy children in our church neighborhood and are now planning to start up English classes again at Casa Roffa (Cossa Roffa). We will also be teaching Rebeca and David English every week too. We are grateful for these opportunities to build relationships and share Christ with these children.

We have some exciting news: we are expecting a new addition to our family in March! We would appreciate your prayers for Kristy and our little one during this time.

“Thank you” doesn’t seem adequate to express our gratefulness for your care, support, and prayers for us. We need God’s wisdom, grace, and strength in every moment, and appreciate so much your part in our ministry!

In His service,
Jonathan, Kristy, and Cory

Thursday, December 28, 2017

Jonathan and Kristy's update 09/09/2017

„But God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty;” I Corinthians 1:27

It is harvest time here for us, and our apple and peach trees gave us an abundant amount this year! We got just a few plums, and no pears. We are hoping, praying, and working for an abundant harvest of souls!

I recently had the opportunity to talk about the Gospel to our elderly neighbor. He complained about the other “repenters” (Christians) in the village not getting along with each other. I explained that we shouldn’t judge others, but we should judge ourselves, because we have all sinned and need God’s forgiveness. He agrees, but does not want to accept Christ. Kristy also had the opportunity to talk to him and another neighbor about our Gypsy church, and the other neighbor seemed interested in coming. One of our other neighbors, Silvia, hadn’t walked by our house for a while as she usually does. When I finally saw her the other day, she said she was sick and in the hospital. She actually talked about God, which she never really did before. Maybe the Lord is opening her heart through this sickness. We pray that God’s light will shine through us to those around us as we seek to bring them to Christ.

Ion (Yone) and his mother Marioara (I’m not even going to try to write that pronunciation!), who came to our church many years ago, came back to Romania from France for a few days. Ion is saved. He said he wants to come back to Romania to stay, and obey God and come to church. That was encouraging to hear, and it was good to see them. Please pray that Ion and his family will come back and follow the Lord.

Sara has been slightly more attentive during some of the teen classes, but continues to hang out with people she shouldn’t. A boy was hanging all over her the other day, and last week she was out walking with another teen boy. Please pray that Sara would give her life to the Lord. She has missed church and our school classes a few times. Several teens have been coming to the teen classes, but most of them end up leaving before we’re done. Sometimes that is actually helpful, as they can be very disruptive. Some of the boys were being rude, making vulgar gestures, yelling, and hitting. We need wisdom, grace, and patience in these situations, and appreciate your prayers for this.

After one of our services the other week, Mariana invited us over to her house for a meal. She said she had been wanting to do this for some time, and we were happy to accept her invitation. :o) We enjoyed the food and had wonderful fellowship.

Many children continue to come to the children’s church classes. The other week, I had over 20 of them, and although they weren’t very well-behaved, they were somewhat attentive and knew answers to the lesson questions at the end. That is always encouraging!

I was able to preach to the adults the other week, as my dad was in Armenia on a missions trip. It is always a blessing to talk with our people and encourage each other in the Lord.

The school classes continue to be well-attended. Last week, some kids were outside making lots of noise, banging on doors and windows. It was distracting, and we would appreciate your prayers that this would stop. This week’s school was much better, and the kids were good.

Please continue to pray that God will give us wisdom in each situation, and that we will be a testimony for Him and follow His leading. We continue to be humbled and honored by your support and prayers for us and the Gypsies!

In His service,
Jonathan, Kristy, and Cory