The Online Bridge: Spring 2006
Issue 13, April 2006

making a difference through obedience, faith, and love

     

Serving Christ back at home
by Alexander Grozev and Ajit Perera

     
Alexander Grozev

I am approaching the end of my studies at ETF (Evangelische Theologische Faculteit). The Lord willing I should be able to finish my courses by the end of June ' 06 and head home to Bulgaria. You know the verse which says "to man belong the plans, but to God the final outcome." Well something similar happened to me. I thought I had all figured out after I finish my Th.M. I could see myself teaching in the Evangelical Bible Institute in Bulgaria. However, God had a different plan for me.

Varna, BulgariaShortly after my wife and I came back to ETF I received a call from one of our Baptist Churches asking me to become their pastor. Well, I did not know what to say at that moment. After some time of prayer and listening to the counsel of some other people who are in the ministry I agreed to accept their call. So the Lord willing, we are going to First Baptist Church in Varna, Bulgaria when I finish here. It is going to be a difficult move since we don't know where we are going to live and how we are going to make it but I know that with God all things are possible.

Editor’s note: A Google search on First Baptist Church in Varna indicates that the German missionary pastor who had been serving there had to leave because of a financial crisis in Germany. The church is not able to offer a salary or a residence to a new pastor, so Alexander’s concerns regarding the challenges he and his wife will face are very real. Please pray for the Grozevs as they take this significant step of faith.


Ajit Perera

Well, I initially came to Canada with my parents and then after a year was recalled to the ministry of my home church in Sri Lanka, The Grace Evangelical (Reformed Baptist) Church. After a year in the church they decided to send me to Bible College and the default choice was Canada (‘cause my people were there). I was set to go to Prairie Bible College, but on arriving in Canada and inquiring we realized that the fees were far too high for our third world church to afford. So, there was I left in the lurch, with a wanting and called to study theology, an no school.

While in this befuddled state, an Asian church in Edmonton recommended that I go to Central Pentecostal Bible School. Since I come from a strict, Reformed Baptist persuasion this was not my preference. So, I waited on the Lord and one fine day a couple from Calvary Community Church informed me of NABC. I came to NABC, I saw, and I was conquered!! I have never regretted studying their under the likes of Carol Potratz, Hans Ristau, Werner Waitkus, Professor Randall, Glen Scorgie, Richard Paetzel, Alan Effa and the effervescent Benno Przybylski. I graduated in 1996 and then moved back to Sri Lanka to join the other half that the Lord had so graciously chosen for me, and also to take up the Sinhala (vernacular) ministry from where I left it.

I am now the father of two beautiful and lively girls Nadhee (River) who is 8, and Suasha (Pure Desires/Hopes) who is 5. I also continue to pastor the Sinhala Congregation of the Grace Evangelical Church, am one of the Grace elders, and serve as the church secretary! My ministry, which began with just three individuals (one teenager and two children), has now grown to 35, including six families and some youth.

One of the highlights of our community is the AWANA program which I direct, and is conducted by a team of well versed teachers. Through the AWANA program we have been able to reach a few Buddhist kids. Please pray for this ministry in particular that we will be afforded the Grace to reach out to more of kids from such backgrounds in the coming year. Pray for me, my wife, and my girls that our personal, family and social lives will challenge many to seek the Lord and to want to know Him.