August 25th 2011
Afflicted, but Not Crushed
“For all things are for your sakes, so that the grace which is spreading to more and more people may cause the giving of thanks to abound to the glory of God” (2 Corinthians 4:15) expresses the heart of the TWR team who traveled to Central Europe to minister among the Roma (formerly called “Gypsies”) people. They were blessed!
“For all things are for your sakes, so that the grace which is spreading to more and more people may cause the giving of thanks to abound to the glory of God”
The team included TWR President Lauren Libby, TWR Director of Radio Partnerships John Summerville and six radio executives from the United States. In Romania and Bulgaria, TWR staff joined them in their outreach to distribute pre-tuned, solar-powered radios among this people group who are the most despised and marginalized in Central Europe.
I recall when TWR first began airing programs to the Roma. Initially, listener responses were few, because the Roma are an oral society. Because of the poverty and societal discrimination they face, many have a minimal education and are nonreaders. Additionally, there is not a complete Bible translation in the Roma language.
The gospel broadcasts in their own heart language (TWR airs programming in seven Roma dialects) had and continues to have a tremendous impact in their lives. We’ve learned that several Roma churches formed as a result of the broadcasts. The TWR team had an opportunity to worship together in a Roma church of about 100 people in Bulgaria, all of whom were fairly new Christians. “It’s like being in the first century and seeing the gospel take root among a people for the first time—very exciting!” said Lauren.