Mission to Montenegro newsletter

Blog entry for 18 May 2020

May 2020 Mission to Montenegro Newsletter

See, darkness covers the earth 
and thick darkness is over the peoples, but the Lord 
rises upon you and his glory appears over you.  Nations will come 
to your light, and kings to the brightness of your dawn. 
Is. 60:2,3

Grace and Peace to you in the name of God our Father!

  • Our Sunday morning service airing online follows the format of our usual liturgy: Call to Worship, Prayers, Singing, Regular Reading through Scripture, and Sermon. Stan picked up his series through Exodus and is currently preaching through the Ten Commandments. This past week, he delved into both the obvious and deeper demands and implications of the seventh commandment, Do not commit adultery, including the gospel seen in God's faithfulness to us.

  • Additionally, we are excited about the online Children's meeting which can also be found on our church's FB and YouTube Channel.  Jelena V has stepped forward to make this happen and her dedication and love for both God and his children really shines forth. Check it out!

  • In lieu of our typical evening service, we gather together via Zoom so that we have a chance to see one another.  Each week, a different member is asked to give a short devotional or word of encouragement. Our gathering together is a highlight of the week.

Current Covid-19 realities here in Montenegro:

  • There is now a rolling lifting of restrictions.  Most shops and businesses are open (with masks and 2m distancing).  Travel within the country is now allowed, although there is still no international travel.  
  • The ban on individuals gathering in people’s homes, other than those belonging to the household, is still in effect as are public gatherings, both inside and outside.
  • Churches have limited freedom, mainly to perform small rites (like baptism), but not gather together as a corporate body due to the limitation of a maximum of one person per 10m ² (one person/100 sq. ft), inside the religious building.  This means we could have 4 people in our main room, plus one in each side room which does not a church gathering make. 
  • However, Montenegro currently has only 4 active Covid-19 cases and has gone 13 days with no new cases.  Thank you, Lord!  We are hopeful that we will get to join together before we write the next newsletter, and what a day of rejoicing that will be!  

Upcoming Ministry and Prayer Requests

  • Because of continuing travel restrictions, summer plans have changed drastically.  Definitely no summer intern (Sorry, Benjamin!), and no UCCF team and English Student camp.  The All-Montenegro Believer's Meeting has been indefinitely postponed.  Camp Monty may go on in a very modified form with locals primarily leading and very few outsiders helping.  Please pray for wisdom in knowing how and when to pick up group activities and outreaches.  
  • Pray for all the witnessing, encouragements, and seed being sown through personal contacts and our online media presence.  
  • Pray for the members of our own fellowship:  for unity, for reaching out to one another, for perseverance in grace and charity, for the financial needs as well as the emotional needs of those hard-hit by the closures, for Stan and the other leaders as they prepare the Sunday services under challenging conditions.
With great love and appreciation for your ongoing prayers and support,

Stan and Vicki Surbatovich

Original link: https://christianitymontenegro.blogspot.com/2020/05/may-2020-mission-to-montenegro.html
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