30Nov
By: amk On: November 30, 2017 In: Conference, Croatia, Mission, Roma, Serbia, Students Comments: 0

“I am actually the only one of the Roma youth in our city, who did not have this experience.” Sasa shares how his cousin Misa is doing. A few days ago he was kicked in his face a few times by a group of four or five men and ended up with serious injuries in the hospital. From what we know the only reason for this was the fact that he is Roma. Misa became a father several months ago and for many years led the youth work and the music group of a thriving evangelical Roma community in Leskovac, Serbia, which was founded in the 90s. 

The vast majority of the approximately 10,000 Roma in Leskovac is Muslim. Almost every second person in this congregation, which now has more than 1,000 members after thirty years of evangelism work, has come to faith through the miraculous healing of someone in the family. Discrimination against Roma is the order of the day, not only in Leskovac, but in many places in Eastern Europe. This is often front-page news. Far less known is the spiritual revival that is going on in many places in Eastern Europe (Read more in Mission Frontiers).

This is one reasons why we recently organized a conference in Osijek, to gain more insight into how the Lord is at work among the Roma. Also to contribute to breaking the negative news that often dominates the media. Barnabas, whom I supervised in writing his Master thesis on Roma work in the Baptist church in Hungary, a few years ago, also attended, even although he now works in Germany. And Pali, whom I first met more than twenty years ago at the opening of the Mission Institute in Budapest. I also looked forward to meet Rici again. I got to know him when during a whole year he visited every day in the library of the Mission Institute, very interested in studying how to translate the Gospel into Roma culture.
Almost forty participants, from eight countries, more than a third Roma attended this conference. And it was great that Sasa, who only recently received his Bachelor degree in theology and his wife, Jelena helped with the organisation, together with the Program team. The program can be found here.

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