Ilona has been serving as a global mission worker in Romania since 1993 and Csaba since 1998. They both currently serve in the DIAKONIA, the Hungarian Reformed Church’s social action ministry in Transylvania (in north west Romania), which was founded in 2001.
Csaba is the coordinator of children’s and family ministry for socially disadvantaged children in seven villages in his home county of Salaj. His work involves administration, supporting and resourcing staff to enable them to minister to marginalised families through educational programmes and family support. Csaba works closely alongside local Reformed congregations and local councils in each village to bring the good news to needy families and help those living in poverty.
Ilona works as educator and family worker with a Roma community in the village of Méra. Her day to day work involves teaching in the afterschool programme, as well as adult literacy, family support, Bible teaching, women’s fellowship and evangelism.
For the past 18 years, Csaba and Ilona’s summer months have been spent organising and leading Bible camps, holiday bible clubs, evangelistic youth events and programmes, often partnered by teams from the Presbyterian Church of Ireland.
Prior to working in the Diakonia Csaba was the general secretary of the Hungarian Reformed Church’s youth board, and Ilona ministered at Aksza Centre for street children in the city of Cluj. Ilona grew up in Sloan Street Presbyterian Church, Lisburn and Csaba in the Hungarian Reformed Church in his hometown of Zalau. Csaba and Ilona have two daughters in their late teens.
During the Covid-19 pandemic, Csaba and Ilona have continued to serve in Romania and have adapted their work and witness to comply with local restrictions. Their work when restricted has included socially distanced visiting, online meetings and supporting children with home schooling by providing lap tops to some children who did not have one.
- Give thanks for the work of God through the Diakonia over the past 18 years, bringing help and dignity to needy communities across Transylvania through education, healthcare, community development and Bible teaching.
- Praise God for those Roma who have come to faith in Christ. Pray that they will grow in faith and be faithful witnesses to God’s power and grace, and that God’s kingdom would continue to spread among the Roma.
- Pray for Csaba and Ilona and the staff of the Diakonia, for teachers, social workers, educators who minister to the Roma communities daily. Ask God to bless their special skills and give them hearts of compassion and opportunities to share their faith in a clear and sensitive way.
- Pray too for the Veres family.
Csaba and Ilona have recorded two film clips (a short 3 minute clip and longer 15 minute clip) which can be downloaded and used in church services, prayer meetings or events to raise awareness and prayer for what God is doing across the world, as we seek to go deep and wide in global mission involvement.
(For previous Digital Dispatches video clips click here)
July / August 2022
In mid-June, some of our Ukrainian friends marked the beginning of their fourth month of residence in Cluj. For many this was a stressful and disheartening landmark, as they had expected the war wouldn’t last so long and they would have been able to return home before now. Pray that we could continue to bring care and compassion to both children and mothers who suffer anxiety, nightmares, fear and stress.
The daily ministry to families and afterschool programme continues and there are many summer activities in the city aimed at supporting families, including our own Bible week in the Tokoz church. We pray the families will continue to experience the care and provision of God, and find strength and refuge in the Lord.
We look forward to the summer camps with thanks for the opportunities to connect with children and young people in Cluj, and pray for an enriching time in the Word of God.
This summer’s camps include a teenage camp from 4 to 10 July. Already we have around 40 young people registered, from seven Reformed churches in Cluj.
As we study the Ten commandments together, pray for good times of prayer, praise and worship, clear teaching from the Word each day and for the young people to engage with the word in the small group discussions.
From 25 to 29 July, we will hold our CCF Bible day-camp, engaging with local and international children. Pray for the team of leaders and teenage helpers as we focus on the theme of ‘Around the world in five days’, considering the creator and sustainer of the world, light of the world, Saviour of the world who calls us to go into the world. Each evening we will also have a teenage youth event.
At the beginning of August we will have a two week building camp, with a team from Germany partnered by a local youth group. The team will complete renovations at the Reformed Church’s campsite at Algyogy.
- Pray for the leaders and teenage helpers of the camps, for all the preparations, and that God would guide every decision, and every activity.
- Pray for our Ukrainian translator, for energy, accuracy, and sensitivity as she translates the Bible lessons each day.
- Pray for the participants, that God would prepare their hearts and that they would come with teachable open hearts to hear and respond to God’s Word.
- Pray for safety and good health for campers and leaders alike.
- Give thanks for a time of holiday in late August and early September.
To download a printable PDF of this bulletin or for a previous bulletin visit the Mission Reports listing at the top or the Global Mission monthly bulletin archive.