Flood Relief in the Balkans
The Association of Reformed Baptist Chruches (ARBCA) has approved an Emergency Special Project for flood relief in the Balkans. The letter below from the ARBCA member Grace Baptist Church in Chambersburg, Pennsylvania as well a letter from Cedo Ravelic give the details of this request and purpose for this Speical Project. ARBCA can receive funds for for flood relief only through September 15, 2015.
"Grace Baptist Church in Chambersburg would like to request an Emergency Special Project as a means of giving ARBCA churches an opportunity to help provide relief from the devastation suffered by many as a result of the recent flooding in the Balkans.
"The brothers Cedo and Simo Ralevic in Serbia are known to many in our churches. Both men pastor small Baptist churches in that region. Cedo’s church is in Nis and Simo’s is 250 km north of there. Simo also prints christian books.
"Our congregation has been sending funds for the past several years to Simo to help to them pay the rent for the building in which they worship.
"They also sponsor a Reformed Seminary there. Here is Cedo’s description from a note to us dated 1/22/13: 'At the moment we have around 15 students who are ready to spend three years with good and solid biblical and reformed doctrines.The seminary is called Balkan Theological Seminary. It takes place in the same building that we are renting all these years...the building where we have church meetings,Sunday school and humanitarian activities...'
"I’ve included below the most recent communication we received from Cedo. There he goes into some detail about the ways his church has already helped 200 families with boxes containing basics like food, sanitary items, medicine, clothes, blankets, bedding and toys. You’ll see that they have a goal of taking care of about 1,000 families for 6 months. They have assured us that they will provide a careful accounting of how all funds received would be used.
"We believe that these men are carrying on a very important and unique work there in Serbia and that we have a great opportunity here to bolster their efforts by our prayers and practical, financial help. I would hope that this might also be the beginning of an ongoing fruitful relationship between our churches and the Balkans that would mean even greater Gospel opportunities in the future.
"Thank you for your consideration of our request.
"With assurance of our prayers for your work,
"Craig Harris, pastor Grace Baptist Church, Chambersburg, PA"
"From: Cedo Ralevic to the Grace Baptist Church in Chambersburg, Pennsylvania
"We are very happy that you are going to help us...This flood destroyed a lot villages and cities...Now we are afraid of diseases that may come when the water go out of the houses, fields,streets....All these days we have been with those people finding out what they need the most right now and how to help.
"We have :
-Paracin there is 1200 families
-Svilajnac 1000families -Smederevska Palanka 1200 families
-Trstenik 500 families
-Obrenovac whole city
"They need right now : food , clothes for the summer , disinfection , medicine. We call it short term help.. And long term help will be furniture, material for building a new houses...because all of them lost their homes and everything they had inside....I know that we can not help to everybody but we have decided to take care about 1000 families for 6 moths till they get little bit better. We have team with 6 people they are all from the church. we have already gave 200 family- boxes with food and sanitation ,clothes ,blankets, mattresses ,pillows,toys for children. And that is all because we stayed out oh budget and goods. Damage in this flood is around 2 billion euros.
"It will be also helpful if you have some of your people who would like to come and help so we can make bigger team for helping people. It is better to sand money. In the team we have a person who is responsible for the money so you will get immediately information and also bill where any cent go. Also we take pictures when we give help. Let us together do this very important work. If you need some more information be free and ask me God bless you!
As you can see the need is great in Serbia for this relief. We are thankful to the Lord for the opportunites our churches to help meet this overwhelming need.
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