Istanbul is a unique city as it straddles Europe and Asia, separated by the Bosporus Straights. Once the centre of the Byzantine Empire and renamed Constantinople by the ‘Roman Emperor turned Christian’ in the fourth century. Needless to say, lots of layers of history.
Istanbul, as the place where Europe and Asia meet, added to the beauty of our multicultural ministry. It was a great time to see the team and hear about the ways God is leading each one in their ministry. I value the encouraging devotions and time for personal prayer. We consider quite important Phil’s efforts to uncover for us what we will face in our different stages of life and ministry. It has helped us see our priorities differently, increasing emphasis on passing on the baton of ministry to the next generation. Alexei and Tatiana, Moscow
More recently (and important for us) it was the venue to meet our two Russian MCNet ministry coaches who we have worked with for many years. As part of our Eurasian training team, they are continuing to train young leaders, married couples and mentoring leaders in their own ministry, as well as across the country. In June Phil and Nancy met with Narina/Valera and Alexei/Tatiana for a week in Istanbul. They were able to encourage them as they shared devotionals of what God has been doing in their lives over the last few years. Phil was also able to walk through his new material on “Finishing the Race.”
Thank you for the opportunity to meet with us as Russians, we have felt so isolated with the current situation. Although Phil has regularly been on Zoom with us, there is nothing like seeing and encouraging each other face to face. We had a great time discussing what was going on in our hearts and ministries the last three years and we are thrilled about the upcoming launch of the CLI training program in Russia. Thanks for everything. Valera and Narina, StP.
As we move forward with training in Russia, it became clear that we needed to begin translating the new competency based mentorship materials (CLI – Christian Leadership Institute) in order to equip the future pastors and leaders in their ministries who have a calling for full time Christian service.