Building Relationships and Serving Across Borders
By Dan Roth, BBI Missionary
For the past fourteen years, our local church, Madona Baptist, has led a ministry, which we call the Dutch Outreach because it is done in partnership with Wilhelmina Church from Haarlem, Holland.
One of the strong points of this outreach is that the same people and institutions are visited each year, which builds relationships and credibility and allows for deeper ministry – organically meeting physical, emotional, and spiritual needs.
This year, volunteers from both churches gathered to make 265 food packages valued at 20 euros each. Approximately 180 homes were visited, in addition to three orphanages, two nursing homes, and a soup kitchen in Madona. The church also has an ongoing ministry at the soup kitchen and two of the orphanages.
It is a great joy to see how important this outreach is to our young people. The core of our youth group graduated from high school and moved to Riga to attend University. I think they all returned to help with at least part of the outreach. And for the church at large, it is something that people both enjoy and value; it is a great discipleship tool.
It also is encouraging to see how this outreach is important to the Dutch church. They have been so faithful (14 years now) and it is truly a passion of theirs. This year, the outreach was led, for the first time, by two young men. The next generation is taking the lead – this has been one of our goals and prayers! Also, some of the young people from Holland have been coming in the summer to help with camp.
Relationships are growing strong. This is especially important in the European context where people move around from country to country for work.
Dan and Katie Roth serve as BBI missionaries in Ergli, Latvia.
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