Russian Seminary Students Bring Big Return on Investment

October 2 2018

Meet Andrey Zhelezoglo, a scholarship recipient at the Moscow Seminary.

Andrey was born in Moldova, USSR, to a family of an underground church pastor. Andrey’s first mission was to hide the shoes under his bed of those who worshiped in the basement in case the KGB would come to inspect the house.

Andrey then became a missionary himself. As a husband, father of 5, and student at the Moscow Seminary, Andrey has planted two churches.

He believes the church must take care of the unprivileged, particularly the abandoned, addicted, and abused. Russia wins the gold in the Olympics for drinking. Vodka costs less than soda and is readily available to minors. There are over 600,000 orphans in 2,000 government-run orphanages and an estimated 1 to 5 million homeless youth. To face the challenge, Andrey has built three houses by his church: a foster family home for 16 orphans, an alcohol rehabilitation center for 12 men, and a safe house for 12 women.

It costs the seminary $1,200 a year to train student-ministers like Pastor Andrey. Your donation to students like Andrey gets you a large return on investment. Statistically, 9 out of 10 students sent to the United States to study will not return to Russia. Because you give, pastors like Andrey have a chance to study at the Moscow Seminary on a scholarship. Will you help a student like Andrey today?

I praise God and thank you for participating in proclaiming the Gospel and advancing the kingdom in Russia.

By Sasha Tsutserov, Director of Moscow Evangelical Christian Seminary

Tags: mecs, moscow seminary, russian students,

​A Celebration of Service: Chuck and Luci Long

June 8 2018

A missionary couple who recently helped build a chapel in a small town in Hungary during their last trip to the country is retiring from One Mission Society. The new chapel is the first one in more than 900 years to be built for its residents since the country had been under a Communist rule. Rev. Chuck and Luci Long have been serving with One Mission Society for more than 25 years and were recently recognized at the OMS World Headquarters for their retirement from OMS during chapel on May 24.

The Longs served one term (four years) in Colombia, seven years with Men for Missions (MFM) as the Western regional directors, and they have helped make disciples of Jesus Christ with students at Asbury University and Theological Seminary in Wilmore, Kentucky, from 1999 to present day. During their service, they were blessed with three children, Jonathan, Roderick, and Juliana. Juliana and her husband, Jim were present at OMS during the chapel celebration. Son Jonathan serves with OMS in Hungary. The Longs also had many of their grandchildren present to help celebrate with them on their retirement.

Chuck spoke on behalf of the couple to the rest of the OMS staff about the handiwork of God and how he uses precise measurements to create everything and everyone in the world. Long has 43 years of experience in construction and used a meter stick he carries around in his pocket every day to demonstrate the good works that God was doing in the world.

OMS President Bob Fetherlin presented the missionary couple with a plaque to commemorate their faithful service for the Lord and OMS. Staff and visitors were invited to a small reception after the service.

Praise God for their amazing work of intentional evangelism in the world and within OMS.

Thank you, Chuck and Luci, for your many years of service!

By Thaddaeus Ristow, Summer Communications Intern

Tags: missionary retirement, faithful service, longs, hungary, colombia, mfm, students,

Students and Professors Lead the Way

August 29 2017

While we were at Tokyo Biblical Seminary (TBS), we sat across the table from a young man who beamed with the fullness of the Spirit. We, of course, were eager to learn his story. His name is Yoshikazu Kasahara, but we call him Yoshi san. Here is his story:

Yoshi san lived in an area of Japan devastated by the earthquake and tsunami of 2011. As he sat on the ruins of his house, a few Christians from one of the Japanese Holiness Churches (JHC) served him water, food, and encouragement. He was so surprised and impressed by their love and kindness that he inquired more about why they were doing these acts of service. This led to Yoshi san hearing the story of Jesus and God’s love for him for the first time. Out of the wreckage of his material world and emotional upheaval, he opened his heart and mind to receive Jesus as Savior and Lord, and he experienced true peace and joy in the midst of his losses. Soon, he was overwhelmed by the desire to learn more about God and how to live for him, so he enrolled in Tokyo Biblical Seminary (OMS’ oldest partner school). During his years there, God called him into ministry.

One of Yoshi san’s professors and advisors at TBS, Homare Miyazaki sensei, reports that Yoshi san is now married and serves as a pastor of one of a JHC church in Saitama-prefecture.

Bikash is from a Hindu Brahmin family in South Asia. When Bikash became a believer in Jesus, his parents forced him to leave their home and disowned him. Despite this, Bikash continues steadfastly in his faith and prays regularly for his unbelieving family. God has blessed him with a wife and children. As a district superintendent for an OMS partner church, he sharpens his knowledge and skills as he attends South Asia Bible College.

Our schools would not function without dedicated faculty. Let me introduce you to a few of them. Please pray for the faculty at our OMS partner schools.

Frans and Sony serve at N* Bible Seminary in the South Pacific, a highly Muslim populated nation. Frans and Sony have been instrumental in fulfilling the mandate to train pastors and church planters to be God’s servants and Christian leaders. For more than 40 years, this seminary’s graduates have established 420 churches in partnership with N* Evangelical Churches and many more churches through partnership with other denominations and Christian organizations. With full accreditation as a Bible college from the government, NBS still holds firmly to its original vision and purpose.

These faithful faculty members serve at Faith Bible College in the Philippines: Rev. Anna Penny Datu, academic dean; Rev. Oliver Bhem, director of student life and chaplain; and Rev. Ermalee Hidalgo, president. All the administrators also teach. Despit being a small school, it provides important instruction for both day and evening students who will serve as pastors, church planters, Christian education directors, and youth leaders.

Please keep the faulty of all our partner schools in prayer as they frequently serve with modest remuneration and in simple settings, yet are preparing men and women to serve God with all their heart, soul, strength, and mind.

By Bill Vermillion, Theological Education team, Asia

* Abbreviated for security reasons.

Tags: theological education, training, seminary, bible school, students, student leaders, asia,

English Camp Makes a Splash in Ukraine

May 3 2016

Olya, a 24-year-old graduate of the Linguistics University in Kiev, Ukraine, was so shy, she would barely mouth a word during our weekly Life Group meetings.

She was content to just sit and listen and think.

Sometimes, when we called on her, she would say some significant things, but she preferred not to talk much. Her quiet personality led her to feel rejected by some classmates during her school years, and that might have contributed to her reserved behavior.

Although she had made a decision to follow Jesus at one of our 2013 summer English camps and started attending a Life Group faithfully, she didn’t really grow significantly until one of the 2014 camps. We invited her to help reach out to new students, but God reached out to her.

“I understood what it means to live with Jesus and to follow him,” she wrote after camp. “I want to change my life totally. Not to be afraid to leave my old life and habits and to be brave enough.”

Now Olya is growing significantly. She has even led the Bible discussion at one of our weekly Life Groups a number of times. She is a thinker and not afraid to ponder questions deeply. She still doesn’t talk a lot in Life Group, but when she does, she usually shares a powerful idea or asks a significant question.

Olya still is learning boldness, but God is changing her. She recently shared how she felt the Spirit prompting her to challenge her pre-Christian brother about some disrespectful comments toward their parents.

He responded not with anger, but remorse—expressing that he feels helpless to stop his behavior. And he asked Olya for help—opening the door for deeper spiritual conversations.

Olya is just one of many Ukrainian young people who have been touched by the Spirit through the English camp ministry in Ukraine. We’ve been privileged to organize 20 camps in Ukraine since 1994.

A goal of our camps is not to teach English—but to help students who already speak English get lots of practice with native speakers. That’s why we invite teams of 10 to 15 native English speakers from North America, the United Kingdom, Australia, and New Zealand.

But our main goal is to place pre-Christian university students in a camp atmosphere with a group of vibrant, Jesus-loving Christians. And the students usually experience a love and acceptance that they’ve never felt before. It forces them to deeply consider the claims of Jesus and the Bible—most for the first time ever.

It’s always amazing to see students who come to camp with an ambivalence toward Christianity and the Bible join so enthusiastically in the worship by the end of camp. The Spirit of God and the love of Jesus have a powerful transforming influence.

To give to the Ukraine Summer English Camp fund, click here.

By Randy Marshall, OMS missionary in Ukraine

Tags: ukraine, summer english camp, students, fun, teaching english, life groups,

Busy Jewish Student Needs Prayer

March 22 2016

As a Jew, about once every three months, I like to participate in the Jews for Jesus campaigns. With my Jewish brothers, I teach the New Testament on Saturdays, in addition to my regular church responsibilities on Sundays.

This semester at MECS, I have some classes I enjoy and some that are not as practical. One class that is useful in ministry is my counseling course. I am involved in ministry at a Center of Social Adaptation (our church reaches out to its inhabitants). There are many abused people in recovery at the center, and I want to apply some of the knowledge and skills I’m gaining in counseling there.

I really enjoy my church music and Russian language & rhetoric classes. I also love our church leadership course! It is based on the history makers curriculum and led by a true leader – pastor of a church and doctor of ministry. It is awesome!

Sometimes it can be tough to carry on with all the responsibilities in my church, along with Jews for Jesus ministry, and the seminary course work. Thank you for your prayers and financial support.

—Yakov Efremenko, MECS student

Moscow Evangelical Christian Seminary was founded in 1992 by One Mission Society. MECS’ reputation as a premier theological training institution continues to grow as former students spread the word. The seminary offers theology, church ministry, youth ministry, and camp ministry degrees at both the master’s and bachelor’s levels. While studying, students enjoy a hands-on experience as part of their course work, in addition to service in local churches. The seminary is located in Russia’s capital city, Moscow, and is directed by Dr. Alexander (Sasha) Tsoutserov. Currently, there are approximately 100 students studying at the seminary.

If you'd like to donate to MECS, click here.

Tags: seminary, russia, mecs, students, jewish, jews for jesus

Seminary Classes Practical for Ministry

March 17 2016

Vasiliy Kazennyh is excited about Jesus. He is a student at the Moscow Evangelical Christian Seminary (MECS). Vasiliy recognizes the value of his classes at MECS and how they will help him in his future ministry. He says he chose MECS because it is so local church oriented. The seminary emphasizes being involved IN ministry WHILE studying. Vasily says each class is relevant to practical ministry situations.

Vasily is also involved in ministry at his church, training the school-aged children in evangelism. He says one of his favorite parts of this ministry is seeing these tender souls accept Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior!

He also volunteers at a charity shop to help in the community and his fellow MECS students. Vasily says, "Our students come from all over Russia and the former Soviet Union. They are poor. To cover their basic needs, we collect used clothes, shoes, etc. and distribute them (at a fraction of the cost) among the needy students. (All the proceeds help support ministries of the seminary.)"

Thank you for advancing the kingdom of God in Russia through the Moscow Seminary!

OMS began work in Russia in 1993, sending short-term teams with CoMission. We then inaugurated MECS in September 1993.

The students of MECS are special … and are becoming the leaders of the Russian church and the nation.

If you'd like to support MECS and students like Vasily, give here.

Tags: russia, seminary, mecs, moscow evangelical seminary, students,

Investment Not in Vain

November 4 2015

Deer in the headlights—that was probably my look many years ago the first time I was translating in front of a large audience. A seminary leader from Ecuador was giving a testimony to a full house of One Mission Society friends and supporters in Hughes Auditorium on the campus of Asbury University. He was expressing gratitude for the many people whose partnership through scholarship funding had made his own studies possible and those of the current generation of seminary students. All was going well. I was understanding him clearly and able to translate his words and ideas into smooth English—until it happened. All of a sudden, he dropped the bomb that every translator fears, an idiomatic expression that I’d never heard before. Although I understood the literal meaning of his words, I was left silently grasping for their significance in this particular context.

What he said was, No han echado la semilla en saco roto (“you have not thrown the seed into a torn sack”). What he meant was, “Your investment in me (and in the other students) was not in vain.” Those words were rolling around in my brain during the recent trip to Ecuador. Every day of those two weeks was a gift—daily glimpses of not-in-vain investments, strung together like a string of precious pearls. I saw the fruit of seeds that had been sown, seeds that had not been tossed into torn sacks, but into receptive lives. Former students are now teachers, pastors, and denominational leaders. Women who were mentored are now mentoring. People who were prayed for have become powerful prayer warriors. Words that were spoken under the direction of the Holy Spirit are continuing to be formative.

God wastes nothing, especially not our investment into the spiritual lives of his children. In 1 Corinthians 15:58, Paul writes, “Therefore, my beloved, be steadfast, immovable, always excelling in the work of the Lord, because you know that in the Lord your labor is not in vain” (NRSV). That is a promise we can count on! Let’s go—let’s make those investments for eternity!

By Rachel Coleman, OMS Missionary, Theological Education Team

Tags: investment, students, theological education, ecuador,

One Mission Stories "After the Show" - Bonnie Steinborn

January 29 2015

We hope you enjoyed last night's (Sunday, Feb. 1) One Mission Stories, OMS' radio program, featuring OMS missionary teacher Bonnie Steinborn, who taught for many years in Asia, and now serves international university students in the U.S. northwest. Bonnie received her missionary call at an early age, (9) and has pursued missions and serving the Lord ever since...in Europe, Africa, and Asia.

Everyone has a story ... enjoy Bonnie's!

Here are our "After the Show" resources to better connect you with things you heard about on last night's program.

GO: Do you want to be a missionary, either short- or long-term with OMS? Check out the opportunities, including all the upcoming short-term trips with MFM.

Learn about the Loja (Ecuador) Challenge 2015! Check out the Facebook page. This is a 1-year opportunity for younger missionaries.

GIVE: If you would like to donate to any OMS ministries, you can do so online.

PRAY: Pray for Bonnie-that when she gets hurt and hurts others, that forgiveness would be present. Also, please pray for an accountability partner for her..and finally, that she would find rest in Jesus alone. That He would recharge her and that she would be able to slow down and soak in the Word when needed.

If you would like to pray for other OMS needs, visit our OMS prayer wall.

COMMUNICATION RESOURCES: Are you looking for OMS books, videos, OMS Outreach magazine, social media connections, etc...check out our media website: https://oms.media

You can also purchase OMS books by contacting the OMS World HQ... call or email Lori McFall at 317.888.3333, ext. 366, or email lmcfall@onemissionsociety.org.

If you'd like a FREE copy of His Banner Over Me by Florence Cavender, write to Lori at: lmcfall@onemissionsociety.org. The first 100 to respond will receive this free gift.

INFO: Tune in to next week's One Mission Stories to hear our international regional directors give reports and stories from around the world. If you would like to know more about any of our ministries around the world, please email us at sloobie@onemissionsociety.org.

If you missed this program or any of our previous programs, click here to listen to the broadcast/podcast on podbean.

Each week, you can listen live on Freedom 95 at 95.9 FM or 950 AM or live streaming at www.freedom95.us. Our programs air every Sunday night from 7-8 p.m.

Tags: radio, teaching, missions, asia, international students, calling,