Emerging from lockdown in Romania
Follow the cautious emergning from lockdown of ECM workers Gary and Iona Stoll in Piatra Neamt, Romania, where they are working with children and youth.
"Since the last time we wrote in May, informing with the information that childrens camps have been postponed for this year, we completed all our children's outreach videos (12 in total, you can find them on Youtube - they are called 'Impreuna Acasa.'), then had a two-week family holiday (at home), and just this week received the go-ahead from the church leadership to re-start work on the ground with children and young people!
"Let's not get too ahead of ourselves. Romania is certainly not out of the woods as far as Coronavirus is concerned. Romania is experiencing a 'second-wave' with a record level of new infections recorded yesterday (17th July 2020). A State of Alert was renewed on July 16th for a further 30 days.
"But it is true on the other-hand that the level of testing has significantly increased since the start of the pandemic. Read into that what you will. The fact of the matter is that Coronavirus exists, it remains a threat, and we must be very careful to protect ourselves and the families with whom we are working
"Why start meetings now?
"There are a number of reasons why we have been given the green light, namely:
- The virus isn’t going away anytime soon, so we need to learn to live and work with it
- The weather is good, so meetings can be held outside (which makes things much easier). It would be harder to re-start meetings in the autumn/winter indoor for example.
- The law permits such meetings with social-distancing
- The church is encouraging small steps to be made now, developing the work in keeping with updating government guidelines
- Parents and children are keen for such meetings to re-start this summer
"How are we going to do it?
- Creating smaller groups that are easier to manage
- Starting meetings with the older ones (teens)
- Training leaders beforehand with government/church guidance
- Suitable written plan that implements legal requirements
- A ‘baby-step’ approach (not doing too much too soon)
"Please join us in prayer
"Concerning the re-starting of meetings with children and young people:
- Paperwork, organisation and strategy
- Leaders to be united, responsible and good examples
- Protection from Coronavirus
- Good weather
- The gospel to be shared, overcoming any obstacle
"Concerning personal matters:
- Gary's parents unable to see grandchildren so far this year
- To enjoy more time as a family in the good weather
- Gary is considering studying Theology part-time (online) to degree level from September
- Ioana's work-load in homeschooling and helping on the mission field
"Thank you for your ongoing prayer and support. The Coronavirus pandemic has certainly changed the way in which we work, but we are working no less. Visits and one-to-ones are high-up on the agenda now, as well as preparation of material for the autumn."
If you would like to follow the Stoll family, please click here.
- July - 28 - 2020 - Emerging from lockdown in Romania
- July - 21 - 2020 - Pray for refugees
- July - 14 - 2020 - Preparing for change despite the crisis
- July - 06 - 2020 - Serving with prayer and actions