I hope this letter finds you full of joy and expectation in the middle of the wonderful advent season. Our daughter, Margot, is finally old enough to really enjoy and understand all of the traditions and events in Christmas. We celebrated St. Nicholas Day (or Szent Mikulas here in Hungary), light our Advent Wreath, and sing songs together. For us this has been a very special season for so, so many reasons.
These past two months I feel like I must have accidentally signed up for some kind of upgrade. God has poured physical blessings out on some of our needs here. We really needed a bigger home, so we were praying next year we would find one. One whirlwind October later, we are in a new home. We needed a bigger car- preferably a van for both family and ministry. One incredible fundraiser later, we have purchased a van. All thanks to the unprecedented kind generosity of the members of our supporting churches in St. Louis.
Our hearts are full this Advent season. Not only with the joy of decorating our new home in Hungary, but also with the blessed joy of seeing your work in ministry begin to bear fruit in two ways:
1. Our weeks are still full of language study. When we're not studying I'm either creating the children's Bible material or helping teammates with various jobs. As you remember from our last prayer letter, our teammates took my material down to Southern Serbia to host the first major children's outreach in the city of Bor. The outreach was a really great success! There was lots of interest, many children attended the Bible groups and it has sprouted a lot of interest in that region. We have now monthly Bible studies set up there.
The stories that came back from the time really moved us. There was a boy who was about 12-13. Definitely older than our usual kids that come to the Bible Clubs. He was given my coloring book and later that night they found him sitting under a street light, sounding out the words in the Lords prayer. Even as old as he was, the Roma in the area are so impoverished they often do not even learn to read. Another young boy came to the events and so enjoyed himself. The morning after the festivities had ended, this boy came to one of our local teammates there and asked for help getting a bus pass so he could attend school. His parents were so surprised because previously he had insisted on not going to school and his parents did not care to send him. Already the material I am making here is changing hearts, reaching children, getting them interested in a God who loves them and planting a desire in them to learn and grow. Seeing all this happen has really blessed us. It is with thanksgiving I praise God for using us in such a real and life-changing way.
2. Back in Pécs our outreach is still in the early stages. Every Friday, I have begun day-long village visits with one teammate, giving me about 6-7 hours total Hungarian language immersion. As you can imagine my brain is fried at the end of these linguistic marathons. I learn a lot and I'm pleased to be able to communicate some, but I can tell it's going to be a lifetime of learning. These visits have been a really good experience for me. Just getting out and experiencing village life again, interacting, making friends and praying for the people. Now that we have our own van, we are going to be visiting this village very regularly as a family!
There is so much to pray about, both for us and with us. Pray that the children's work would continue to grow and bear fruit.
Pray that our language study would continue to go well as it goes up and down in discouraging "hills". The grammar is a monster.
Pray that the local outreach grows and continues to formulate into something that can really bear fruit. So far we have been met with interest and acceptance and I hope it is the beginnings of a pleasing work here for the Lord.
The Lord bless and keep you,
-Taylor & Helen Moineau