Martin | Slovakia | April | 2022
Dear Friends and Partners,
The present war in Ukraine offers valuable insights not only to our struggles but also to many biblical texts. During the past period of peace in Europe, our struggle here in CEE might have looked as if we have been battling just for more classrooms or fundraising money for reconstructions to have proper infrastructure. Yes, we were doing that, but this is not our ultimate goal. As it is written in Ephesians 6:12
“… our struggle is … against the powers of this dark world
and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.”
Yes, our struggle is essentially spiritual, and all the infrastructure is just a necessary means to fight evil. CCE has been involved in this struggle ever since its beginning, and this present war clearly reveals how crucial this spiritual struggle is. For if we neglect fighting evil in times of peace, then evil gains strength and opens fire as in Ukraine. Therefore, our struggle in peaceful times is as important as it is now when we face the war, help refugees, and hear about all the crimes. The momentum of help the outburst of the war created must be kept up. Even when the war ceases, evil remains alive, so our fight must go on! Jesus’ resurrection is the guarantee that it will be victorious.
Helping Ukrainian refugees is an important part of our fight against evil. CCE and LAMS are the leading institutions to launch refugee centers for Ukrainians in the city of Martin. One of them provides groceries and sanitary item and the other clothes. Tomáš Gulán from LAMS is one of the supervisors of these centers that serve over 900 refugees in the Martin area. As he says they weekly distribute over 5000 pounds of groceries and basic clothing for over 400 Ukrainian visitors. Workers and volunteers in these centers assist them with documents and help them apply for jobs. They also arrange doctor visits, serve as interpreters, and are helpful whatever the need is.
Organizing and sending volunteers to serve in the Lutheran rescue center at the Slovak Ukrainian border is another significant activity that CCE does with the help of LAMS and local Lutheran congregations. To date (April 30) over 40 individuals in five shifts have provided refreshments for them, listened to their stories, and managed their transportation from the border. One of them, our student Michal Kiseľ sums up his experience in the following words: “I was stationed around 30 meters away from the border line acting as first contact with the refugees crossing. We were curious to hear their stories, but we obviously didn’t want to force them, because they must’ve seen some terrible things. To my surprise, many started telling stories by themselves. Mainly older pensioners showed us pictures of bombed houses, shot cars and bodies on the streets. It was a shocking experience, but after 3 days of 12+ hours of daily work I wasn’t able to process all the info and only after a week I was able to sort of grasp on what I heard. I am very happy I went there and if it wasn’t for school, I’d go again. The feeling of helping someone in need is just amazing.”
Dear friends and partners, our school continues its mission through education, and we serve our Slovak communities as well. Organizing a run “A Mile for Hope” LAMS was able to fundraise 3,188€ for the Lutheran school that takes care of children with a combined disability: those who are visually and hearing impaired. The LAMS Drama Club won a county competition and advanced to the national level with the drama they performed also for their fellow students as well addressing how a totalitarian regime eventually takes freedom away from people.
Several students of various levels won national competitions in Bible and French Olympics. These and all other activities are the important means to fulfill our goal: bring the Gospel to people in our reach, now Slovaks and Ukrainians as well. We are looking forward to summer to extend our mission. With your help we plan to run a J-camp, VBS, and ESL courses. These efforts are a part of our fight that is not so visible but is no less important. We thank you for your continuing support in our mission.
Yours in His service,
Adrian Kacian, Director of Development Bohdan Hroboň, president of CCE
If you want to use the CCE contacts to help Ukraine, donate money as usual with the memo “Ukraine”. We will keep you informed how the money is used.
|Ways to GIVE | Make your tax-deductible gift in one of these ways:|
|Paul Berge, Director
St. Andrew’s Lutheran Church
900 Stillwater Road,
Mahtomedi, MN 55115
|| DONATE NOW ||
815 S. Washington St.,
Naperville, IL 60540
|Mark Johnson, Board Member
7913 NE 58th Ave.,
Vancouver, WA 98665
|Through Your Home Church
If your church is a partner of the Center for Christian Education, make a donation noting “CCE” in the memo line of your check. Your church’s business office will include your contribution along with its regular support.