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Monthly of the Hungarian Baptist Convention of North America
(EvHir-English8 = Issues from January 2002 to December 2002)

DECEMBER, 2002

"Unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given." (Isaiah 9:6)

Ring the Bells

Christians, ring the bells of your hearts, fire the salute of your most joyous songs, for unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given. Dance, dance every one of you! Oh, let gratitude touch you with angelic fingers! And you, my tongue, shout - shout to His praise, who has said to you, Unto you a Child is born, unto you a Son is given.

Wipe that tear away! Come, stop that sighing! Hush your murmuring. What matters your poverty? Unto you a Child is born. What matters your sickness? Unto you a Son is given. What matters your sin? For this Child shall take away your sin, and this Son shall wash you and make you fit for heaven.

Charles H. Spurgeon

90TH ANNIVERSARY OF CALVARY BAPTIST CHURCH 
 KIPLING, SASKACHEWAN, CANADA
 
Calvary Baptist Church celebrated the 90th Anniversary of the church on Sunday, July 21, 2002.

 

    (click on the picture for a larger one and more)
 
   The morning worship service was held in the church at 10:30, with Rev. Rick Williams, of Swift Current as guest speaker. Rev. Williams is currently the moderator for the Heartland Area Baptist Churches in Manitoba and Saskatchewan. His message was entitled: AA Time to Celebrate.@
      The afternoon service was at the Kipling Community Center. Rev. Norman Hovland from Nova Scotia brought the message, AMinistry and message for today.@ Former Pastor, Audrey Kemp shared in both services. Rev. Richard Barta was in charge.
      Musical selections at both services were rendered by the Basky Family Chorus, consisting of Irene & Allan Basky, Donna (Hall), Eleanor (Hovland), Edith (Mcpherson). Curtis & Bonnie Szakacs along with Heidi & Meka shared several selections. The Szakacs Trio, Evelyn & Natasha & Mildred Stachiw also shared. Pianist was Curtis Szakacs.
      Messages of greetings were read by Pastor Barta from former pastors Rev. Paul Hay, Rev & Mrs. Jake Rabuka, also Gabriella Olah, Edward and Louise Daku, Alex & Marilyn Venyige.
      Greetings in person were given by M.L.A. Don Toth, Alex Dakue from the Parkland Church, Glynne Twigge from Bekevar Presbyterian Church, Ron Weibe from the People’s Church and Elias Szmutko of the Moosomin Baptist Church.
      A short history of the church was read by Irene Basky & Pauline Daku. * Following the afternoon service the ladies served lunch and there was a time of renewing friendships and reminiscence of past years. There were many visitors from out of town as many who had attended Calvary Baptist Church came back to attend this special anniversary service.
      By special request a group of the former Baptist Young Peoples’s group over the years went to the front to have a picture taken. There were visitors from British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Ontario and Nova Scotia. In his closing remarks Pastor Barta thanked all those who attended.
      We are very thankful to our Heavenly Father for the past 90 years, and our prayer is for blessing and guidance in future years.
      Pauline Daku    (* We will publish thet here in January.)

The Power of Prayer

50 Christian truckers got together to pray that somehow the sniper terrorizing the Washington, DC area would be caught. Ron Lantz would be retiring as a driver in a few days and didn't even live in the area, but he felt sure that God would answer their prayers.

A few days later he was listening to the radio as he was driving again through the region and felt compelled to pull off the highway to a rest stop. It was just a couple of miles from where the prayer meeting had taken place. As he pulled in, he was shocked to see a car similar to what was being described on the radio right there before his eyes.Carefully trying to read the license plate, a chill went up his back as the numbers matched. He quickly called 911 and remained there for what he said were the longest 15 minutes of his life until the police arrived. He even pulled his truck across the exit, there would now be no escape for these elusive murderers. The rest is now history - the snipers were taken into custody without incident.Ron's testimony is being beamed around the world today. It shows the power of prayer. And in a class act, showing his true character, when asked what he would do with the award money, he said the half million dollars would simply be given to the victims' families.The snipers killed 10 and wounded 3 around our nation's capital over the past three weeks, leaving the entire region in a state of terror. Yet out of the great darkness has also come a great beam of light as the world has heard a clear testimony of the power of prayer.    www.presidentialprayerteam.com 

"How Soon Is Soon?" - Mark 13:24-37
 
Advent is both a time of remembering and a time of preparation. We remember what God has done in the past, in Moses, in the prophets, in Jesus, and in our own lives. And we try to prepare ourselves for what God will do in the future. We never know how or when God will break into our lives. The message of the Gospel is be ready for anything at any moment.
      I went down to the convenience store one day to rent some movies. When I came out with my movies I saw a man standing on the corner holding up a cross with the name Jesus printed on the cross bar. He was waving it at passing cars and shouting "Jesus is coming soon! Heaven or hell forever!" I looked at the movies I had just rented and paused for a moment, wondering if I would have time to watch them or if I should take them back. I decided to risk it.
      Jesus is coming soon. The street corner prophet got that right. But how soon is soon? This is part of the mystery of the faith we live. "Christ has died; Christ is risen; Christ will come again." It is not a question of heaven or hell forever, but of heaven or hell right now, for the kingdom of God is very near. Jesus declared it in his very first words at the beginning of his ministry: "The time is fulfilled, the kingdom of God is at hand..." (Mark 1:15a). It is what we are to pray for every day:
      "Thy kingdom come, thy will be done" (Matthew 6:10a). It is both here and yet to come. It is a mystery, a reality we live in, a promise fulfilled in the birth, death, and resurrection of Jesus, and a promise we wait to be ultimately fulfilled in the time to come. Jesus says, "Beware, keep alert; for you do not know when the time will come" (Mark 13:33).     (StoryShare)

European Baptist Federation Annual Meeting
 
Unanimously leaders of Baptists in Europe approved the Indigenous Missionary Project that will help supply funds for planting churches throughout Europe, at the European Baptist Federation (EBF) annual meeting September 26-28 in Oslo, Norway. The first program in the project will be in Moldova.
 
Religious freedom in Belarus was of great concern. At that time the Belarusian government was attempting to pass one of the most restrictive religious laws seen in Europe since the fall of Communism, that threatened to destroy many of the small Baptist churches there because they do not have enough people to register with the government. This law has just been approved and signed by President Mr. Alexander Lukashenko on October 31. Prayer and action by Baptists are needed.
Council members prayed for peace and pleaded with governments of the world to work with the United Nations and avoid war with Iraq.
 
Congratulation Jimmy Carter
On behalf of millions of Baptists worldwide the General Secretary of the BWA, Denton Lotz, congratulated President Jimmy Carter, the 2002 Nobel Peace Prize winner. Lotz said, AFor years we have prayed that the world would recognize you in this way because we know of no other person who has been such a great example of peace in the world. Thank you for not being ashamed of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.@
 
Azerbaijan Church Closed
Almost a month after the BWA leaders visited pastor Sare and the small congregation in Baku, Azerbaijan, the government has closed the Baptist church and put the pastor under house arrest. In a message pastor Sare said, AToday we had our last court case and the head Court of Azerbaijan has closed us. We still don’t know what is our mistake and why they closed our church.@ The Baptist group is described as Atraitors of the religion,@ and Aenemies of Islam, the government and the nation.@
The BWA has appealed to the Government of the United States and the United Kingdom to do what they can to help free pastor Sare... and >The Love Church,’ which has been denied their right to worship.
 
Middle East
Dangerous risks and rewards of ministry in the Middle East were described by more than 60 delegates from Baptist Unions in Jordan, Syria, Lebanon and Egypt that met in Amman, Jordan, October 17-20, in a mission conference organized by the European Baptist Federation (EBF), to discuss the possibilities for work in the Middle East
Concerned with the possibility of war with Iraq, the heightened tensions with Islam in the light of the many terrorist attacks and some statements made by leading evangelical leaders who have attacked the Muslim religion, the Middle East leaders called for negotiations with Iraq and a peaceful solution rather than war. They endorsed a resolution passed at the EBF general council meeting in Norway in September in which Baptist churches were called upon to Aoppose any unilateral action against Iraq which does not have the official sanction of the United Nations, and to actively support all UN efforts to avoid violent conflict.@ They also rejected negative statements made by some religious leaders and called for prayer for the believers in the Middle East.    (BWA News, Nov. 2002)
November, 2002.
 
The Silliman Memorial Baptist Church
Bridgeport, Conn.
 
There is still a spark of recognition for our Hungarian Baptist Convention within the Silliman Memorial Baptist Church in Bridgeport. There are still a few members there that are still associated with our Hungarian community. The majority of members however are of other backgrounds and are serving God on an ongoing basis. They all know however that the church once functioned as an active member of our Convention and are also aware of the fact that our Bethesda Baptist Retirement Home had its beginnings there at their church. As a result of this, your Board of Directors felt that on the sale of the Home, our Convention would be remiss in our responsibility if we did not thank them for what our Convention has in resources for what they instituted so many years ago. We therefore remembered their sacrifices of so long ago with a gift of ten thousand dollars. Our presentation letter was read before the congregation on September 15th by one of our old time members and they were delighted to receive our thoughtful help. This will help them to continue spreading the gospel in their area.
 
          Ernest J. Kish, Chairman - Finance Committee

News from Ruth Wright
ESL, English as a Second Language, continues to be one of the most effective ways to share Christ with Internationals. The Gospel was planted in the hearts of everyone you see here through outreaches, personal contact beyond the classroom, and building relationships one-on-one. Only eternity will reveal what God did beyond what we know.
      I have sensed through God’s Spirit that He wants to do a greater work in this ministry; therefore, several changes will be made. Smaller class sizes and introducing Bible into our curriculum are being planned. All who work in this ministry will be trained to share their faith with people of other nations.
      This year we introduced a day of prayer once a month for the ESL participants. More than half responded with their requests.
      A local supermarket provided weekly donations of bakery items free to all in the program. Not only can they learn English but also take bread home. However, the most important thing we want them to take home is the Word of God. Bibles in their language and tracts are available for them.
      In it all, I still find my greatest joy when God singles out one person who has a spiritual hunger. This is happening again this summer with a girl from Mexico. She indicated that she knows nothing about God’s Word but wants to learn. My inner circle of friends are three women from Iran and Afghanistan. What a joy to know and love them. God is working in their hearts.
      Please continue to pray for me. My desire is to know the will of God day by day and to be completely surrendered to Him so that His mighty power is poured out on these precious lives He has entrusted to our care.
      Thank you for praying and giving as the Lord leads. 
           Ruth Wright

SALVATION

When the World Trade Center towers collapsed on September 11th, sixty-nine percent of the fatalities occurred with people who were at or above the entry point of those two jets. In the south tower, six-hundred civilians died above the plane’s impact. Most of those people didn’t realize there was an open staircase which connected the upper floors to the street. Of the hundreds who were trapped on the top thirty-three floors, only eighteen people used that staircase to escape. The tragedy is horrible enough, but to think how many more could have been saved had they known about the open stairway. The gospel is like that life-saving staircase, but only those who find it can escape certain death. Illuminating the pathway to eternal life is the ongoing responsibility and privilege of every Christian. (Associated Press)

Georgian Baptists

The Bible burning incident of February 3 by a dissident Orthodox priest in Tbilisi, Georgia, who led a group of supporters to burn down a warehouse with Bibles belonging to the Union of Evangelical Christians Baptists of Georgia (UECBG) moved President Eduard Shevardnadze to issue a Presidential decree that the religious violence be stopped.

At a reception with the President, Bishop Malkhaz Songulashvili, president of the Union, presented him with one of the newly received Bibles which are now being guarded from potential destruction by the Orthodox priest. Songulashvili says the government has been slow to prosecute the priest and he and Merab Khabazi, chief accountant of the Bible Society, now keep watch over their building to safeguard the Bibles which could also become a target for the defrocked Orthodox leader, he believes.

There is also a new concern for the draft religious law which continues to give special protection to the Orthodox Church. When the Baptists and other Christian leaders were given a draft for their comments they expressed concern at the accusation that aid and relief work was tied to religious conversion with possible criminal consequences. (BWA News)

Spiritual Purity - does it matter?
 
Let’s be honest. Most of us do not have enough theological training, enough time for reflection and a sufficient thirst for spiritual purity to screen out the unbiblical theological messages that are thrust upon us every day. The world of entertainment and mass communications -- through television, radio, contemporary music, movies, magazines, art, video games and pop literature -- is indisputably the most extensive and influential theological training system in the world. From commercials to sitcoms, from biographies to hit songs, from computer simulation games to talk shows, God=s principles are challenged every moment every day, in every entertaining palatable and discreet ways. Few Christians have the intellectual tools to identify and reject the garbage.
       Does it really matter? you ask. Absolutely! Since your life is a direct reflection of the values, principles and truths in which you believe, and because those elements are greatly impacted by your religious beliefs and convictions, the substance of your faith matters a great deal. It mattered enough for Jesus to take every opportunity He had to expound on those principles and truths. It mattered enough for God to make sure that humanity would have His Word as an enduring guide to holy living -- a guidebook that implores us to embody those principles and truths and energetically purge our lives of false principles.
The idea of striving for holiness is not even on the radar screen of most Christians, partly attributable to the absence of clear standards, serious spiritual relationships and consistent accountability.

Hungarian novelist Kertesz wins Nobel for literature
 
The Nobel Prize in literature went to Imre Kertesz, a Hungarian novelist and Auschwitz survivor.
      Honoring the 72-year-old Budapest Jew for his uncommon, single-minded gift for saying the unsayable, the Swedish Academy on Thursday singled out his 1975 debut novel, "Sorstalansag" ("Fateless"), about a young man who is taken to a concentration camp but conforms and survives.
      "For him Auschwitz is not an exceptional occurrence," the academy said. "It is the ultimate truth about human degradation in modem experience."
      Kertesz was deported in 1944 to Auschwitz in Nazi-occupied Poland, then to the Buchenwald concentration camp in Germany, where he was liberated in 1945, Of the 6 million Jews killed in the Holocaust, some 600,000 were Hungarian.
      Kertesz is the first Hungarian to win the award, worth about $1 million.  (news clip)

I CAN'T REMEMBER
 
Just a line to say I’m living,
that I’m not among the dead.
Though I’m getting more forgetful
and mixed up in the head.
 
I got used to my arthritis,
to my dentures I’m resigned.
I can manage my bifocals,
but God I miss my mind.
 
For sometime I can’t remember
when I stand at the foot of the stairs,
if I must go up for something
or have I just come down from there.
 
And before the fridge so often,
my poor mind is filled with doubt,
have I just put food away,
or have I come to take some out.

 

 
 
And there’s times when it is dark
with my nightcap on my head,
I don’t know if I’m retiring,
or just getting out of bed.
 
So, if it’s my turn to write you,
there’s no need for getting sore.
I may think that I have written,
and don’t want to be a bore.
 
Here I stand beside the mail box,
with a face so very red,
instead of mailing you my letter,
I had opened it instead!
 
So remember that I love you,
and wish that you were near.
Now it’s nearly mail time
so must say goodbye dear.
           (Author unknown)

 

 
 
October, 2002.

BETHESDA HOME SOLD!

The Bethesda Baptist Retirement Home had been for sale for over two years. During this time many interested buyers came to look at our facility and to make comments and bids. We had to supply to each interested buyer much information and written reports which was needed to back up our statements to prove our values. After many efforts, our Home was finally sold on August 30th to three Christian individuals. According to the sale agreement, we will carry a mortgage for two thirds of the sale price for a period of four years. It is their plan to pay off their debt much before the due date. They will build new buildings on the 17.4 acre property.

Present at the closing was our President, the Reverend Alexander Kulcsar; our Vice-President, the Rev. Dr. Geza Herjeczki; our Treasurer, Mr. Louis Drescher; and our General Secretary, Mr. Steve Szabo. Our new buyers are very fine Christian men and after our closing, we prayed with them and wished them God speed in their new endeavor. They will retain the name of Bethesda but will add Senior Center, Inc.


The signing at the Library. Present are the officers of the Hungarian Convention, 
the lawyers (in the midle), the new owners (right).


"The last supper" at the Bethesda Baptist Retirement Home on August 30, 2002.

They will pay our convention monthly for a four year period. After that they will pay the balance due as a lump sum payment. We also felt that we should reward each of our faithful employees with a nominal gift of money commensurate with their years of service. We felt that this was the proper thing to do. After paying the expenses involved with the sale, we invested the monies in Government Bonds and long term CD’s. We also invested monies in a Trust Account with the ABC (American Baptist Churches) as a continuation of our Reversionary Clause.

I must admit that I had mixed feelings about the sale. I had been involved with the Home almost from the very beginning. I remember some of the residents that were present back in 1924. We were all involved with the Home. We had to provide food for the residents from our own meager resources. I remember picking up pails of coal in the coal yard in order to provide heat during the winter months. Later, I served as a Board member and still later my wife, Ethel and I served as its director and after that Chairman of the Board. The Home has always been near to my heart. Throughout all this period of time, the Home was a Christian haven for people from every walk of life. Many people made Bethesda as their final resting place. We have served our people for seventy-eight years. Now, that part of our service is behind us. It is time now to concentrate on other missionary endeavors. God has been good to us and I am sure that He will continue to bless us if we continue to pray and use our resources wisely to further build His kingdom for many years. Let us make this our prayer for the future.

Ernest J. Kish

THINKING MAKES IT SO

"Whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable--if anything is excellent or praiseworthy--think about such things" (Philippians 4:8, NIV).

A Native American boy was talking with his grandfather. "What do you think about the world situation?" he asked. The grandfather replied, "I feel like two wolves are fighting in my heart. One is full of anger and hatred. The other is full of love, forgiveness and peace."

"Which one will win?" asked the boy.
To which the grandfather replied, "The one I feed."

Franklin D. Roosevelt said, "Men are not prisoners of fate, but only prisoners of their own minds," and James Allen rightly stated that, "You are today where your thoughts have brought you; you will be tomorrow where your thoughts take you."

Another has said, "What the mind dwells on the body acts on." If you don't believe this, think how temptation works - first a thought that seems to come from nowhere . . . we feed it and the thought begins to expand . . . then one's feelings get involved . . . and the more we think about it . . . the more we hunger for it . . . then we begin to rationalize and justify what we want to do . . . and the battle is lost. It's all in the mind.

As they say about computers: GIGO = garbage in garbage out. So it is with the mind. If we keep looking at and thinking about garbage, we will act out accordingly. But, if as the Bible says, we concentrate on thoughts that are noble, right, pure, lovely, and admirable, we too, will act accordingly. It's all in the mind, for what the mind dwells on the body acts on.

"Dear God, please help me to learn how to guard my thought life, and to concentrate on noble thoughts that lead to noble living and noble deeds. Help me to appreciate the fact that your Word is a lamp unto my feet and a light unto my path. Thank you for your word to me today and for hearing and answering my prayer. Gratefully, in Jesus' name, amen."

A PRAYER FOR OUR PASTORS
Dear God,
Bless our pastors today! Make them too big to be little, too wise to he foolish, too spiritual to be worldly, too tail to get chips on their shoulders, too zealous to be idle, too cultured to be coarse, and too joyful to be morbid.
Empower them with the Spirit of Christ to make them effective in the pulpit, calm under pressure, and strong even in weaknesses.
Give them wisdom to wait when they do not know what to do, love when they must rebuke the wolf scattering the flock, and grace when they must sit silently suffering rather than arise in self-defense. Strengthen them when they would be lured into shallow or deep sins, when the stand they must take will not be appreciated by the people who pay their salaries, and when they are the target of tongues whetted to a severe sharpness.
Fill them with unction every Sunday, with enthusiasm every Monday, and with your Holy Spirit every day. AMEN.
HAVE YOU APPRECIATED YOUR PASTOR AND HIS FAMILY LATELY?
September, 2002.
 
THE WORDS TO OUR HYMNS
by Ernest J. Kish
 
How many of us really pay attention to the words of the hymns that we sing. Or, are we taken aback by the beauty of only the tune itself. Those of us who have been singing our hymns for many years have developed a liking for both the music and the words that go with it. How many of us can forget the tune and the words of "Jesus loves me this I know," or "What a friend we have in Jesus."
 
These are staid old hymns which will last forever. But then, some of us both here in the USA and in Europe are beginning to use more contemporary hymns that have limited meaning in the words involved and the music is repetitious and not really tuneful. It has been said that this is being done to satisfy our young people who want a more modern lilt to the tune and to bring the language of the hymn into a more modern mode.
       A hymn in my opinion is a form of worship of God. What we say and how we say it is a part of our worship. Thus, we should consider both the beauty of the music as well as the words therein.
Some of the hymns that have been around for many generations are "Have you any room for Jesus". Both the words and the tune is really beautiful. How about "Softly and tenderly Jesus is calling." This too is beautiful in both the music and the verse.
      Those of us who are fortunate enough to know a language other than our English language have been doubly blessed with hearing our beautiful hymns in more languages than one. And somehow the Hungarian words are prettier. In our lovely Hungarian language we have a hymn that to me has been meaningful throughout many years. How could we not love to sing and hear such a hymn as "Ha néha néha bús vagyok, és szívemben el lankadok, holott e földi gondokon kesergni nincs okom. Ha már az Úr elé megyek és kérek Tőle új szívet, Mert földi bánat és keserv a mennyből nem ered." These words are beautiful and meaningful. The tune also matches the words.
The words of AAn Evening Prayer have been set to music by Charles H. Gabriel and we should all make this our own evening prayer.
"If I have wounded any soul today
If I have caused one foot to stray
If I have walked in my own willful way
Dear Lord, forgive.
If I have uttered idle words or vain
If I have turned aside from want or pain
Lest I myself shall suffer through the strain
Dear Lord, forgive.
Forgive the sins I have confessed to thee
Forgive the secret sins I do not see
O guide me, love me, and my keeper be
Dear Lord, forgive"
           C.M. Battersby
All of our hymns have special meaning to us. Let us sing them with feeling and with attention to their beautiful music and their messages. We will be blessed as a result.
           Ernest J. Kish

MEMORIES OF PALM BAY

Memories... memories... precious memories.

I pondered these as my sister Judy and I drove south from Daytona Beach, Florida, past Cape Canaveral, Melbourne, and then to Palm Bay where the Bethesda Baptist Retirement Center is located in a quiet peaceful community off U.S. Highway No. 1.

1946. Memories. When, as a young girl, I accompanied family friends who were traveling from Cleveland to Florida. Palm Bay was our first overnight stop at the home of Hungarian friends. Little did I realize that this small town and its surrounding farmland would, a few years hence, become the location of a retirement village adjacent to the site where rockets and satellites are sent into the vastness of space.

1964. Memories. When, as a newly married couple, Sandor and I stopped at Bethesda on our way to Miami. Truthfully, we had no intention of retiring at that time but were interested in learning more about this settlement for elderly brethren. The three buildings we visited are still habitable, now being used as clean and comfortable facilities for tourists and guests.

1989. Such a comparison! Although the ocean waves still lap at the Atlantic's shores and the Indian River serenely flows along while seagulls glide above, much has changed during the past 20 to 40 years. The Cape was born! Can you imagine, even in your wildest dreams, what a difference these years have made?

As I looked across the wide expanse of the Indian River, I could see on the beachside monstrous buildings jutting up into the sunlit blue sky B the Vertical Assembly Building and other "contraptions" for launching satellites into space.

While here on land, instead of citrus groves and scrub brush, autos zig-zag in and out on multi-lane highways rather than the two-way roads of the past. Every imaginable type of business flourishes at the roadside to entice the tourist and/or the local populace. And, as elsewhere, everyone seems to be in a terrible hurry - to get "nowhere fast."

However, there is respite and a quiet time for those who have finished their life's labors and now are ready to rest a while. Bethesda Baptist Retirement Center serenely exists amid the hustle and bustle of Cape Canaveral's technological metropolis. Nestled among stately palms and pine trees, you'd never guess that a busy world is less than a mile away.

Red brick buildings have been erected for the residents since Sandor and I were there in 1964. Among these is a statuesque church with white steeple, where Rev. Barton Brown conducts worship in English and Mr. Ernest Kish in Hungarian. I was told that a kindly nun also visits the center, bringing her guitar and several youth who offer hymns and services for residents of the Catholic faith.

Introducing myself to the friendly administrators, Ernest and Ruth Cziraky, I learned that they had met in 1949 at the Akron, Ohio, Hungarian Baptist Youth Conference and lived mostly in Cleveland after they married in 1950.

Ernest and Ruth lovingly oversee the operations which consist of caring for 68 residents in cheerful, modern surroundings. These attractive brick buildings were constructed only five years ago with condominium-type apartments and efficiencies, spacious dining room, a recreation room and a library.

The gardens and fishing dock were deserted but this was understandable since the area had just survived a disastrous cold wave at Christmastime. However, I could see that great care was taken to provide the elderly with pleasant outdoor rest and recreation when weather permitted. Since Sandor went to his eternal home last fall, it was a bittersweet experience for me to walk along the same paths, under the same tropical sun, see the same dock with an eagle lazily floating overhead, as well as a sign suggesting that we not become too friendly with two alligators, unobtrusive but permanent residents nearby.

Thirty employees work to make life more comfortable for the residents. Ruth told me that several types of activities are offered, including walking tours, crafts for men and women such as carpentry, shell work, oil painting, watercolor and ceramics. The center even has its own kiln for ceramic firing. She said the residents take great delight in making gifts for friends and visitors.

Ruth said that anyone traveling the Florida East Coast or touring Cape Canaveral, is welcome to spend an hour or two, overnight or longer, at Bethesda.

Memories... memories... precious memories.

Klári Vereczky Mális (1990)

You Can Know For Sure
You Are On Your Way to Heaven!
 
Both John the Baptist and Jesus preached repentance. "Repent: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand." Matthew 4:17b Repentance is a change of mind about your way and your sin and a turning to God's way and His salvation. Jesus said,"I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me." John 14:6
 
YOU CAN HAVE THE GIFT OF ETERNAL LIFE!
 
1. You need to realize you are a sinner and in rebellion before Almighty God.
"There is none that doeth good, no not one." Romans 3:12b
"For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God." Romans 3:23
2. There is a price for sin.
"For the wages of sin is death." Romans 6:23a
Wages are something that you earn and deserve. As sinners we deserve death and earn a place in hell.
3. Jesus paid the price for sin for you. He died for you so that you do not have to die and go to hell.
"This is a faithful saying, and worthy of all acceptation, that Christ Jesus come into the world to save sinners." I Timothy 1:15
"But God commendeth His love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us." Romans 5:8
4. Salvation and eternal life is a free gift and cannot be earned or worked for.
"For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast." Ephesians 2:8-9
"...the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord." Romans 6:23b
5. Because eternal life is a gift it must be received in order to have it.
"But as many as received Him, to them gave He power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on His name." John 1:12
The way you receive Him is to pray and ask Him to be merciful to you. The Lord Jesus really does want to forgive you and receive you as His child. Call on His name today.
"For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved." Romans 10:13
 
Pictures taken at the Detroit Convention. Click here !
 
Gospel Messenger - July - August, 2002.

Hungarian Baptist Convention of North America
95th ANNUAL CONVENTION - JULY 26-28. DETROIT
1362 Chandler, LINCOLN PARK, MI 48146
Phone; (313)381-7315, (313)382-3735
Theme: He is our peace (Ephesians 2:14)

We cordially invite you to the 95th ANNUAL CONVENTION of the 
HUNGARIAN BAPTIST CONVENTION OF NORTH AMERICA. 

Please join us if you relate in any way to our convention. Officers of the convention, members of our churches, members at large or readers of the Gospel Messenger are expected to come and sit in the meetings and also worship with us as we want to make even our meetings a kind of worship service to express our unity with each other and with the Lord Jesus Christ.

Date: July 26-28. More information: (313)382-3735 
Location: 1362 Chandler, Lincoln Park, Michigan (see map at our web site).

Excerpt from the program:

Friday 
12:00PM Registration and lunch 
1:00 to 3:30PM Committee meetings 
4:00PM Opening of the 95th Convention 
7:00PM Worship service, organized by the Women’s Convention.

Saturday 
morning (starting at 9AM) and early afternoon: 
Official meetings of the Convention 

Saturday afternoon: Women’s, Men’s and Youth Convention, separate locations 

7:00PM Worship service, highlighting the Youth of our Convention Sermon by the Rev. Laszlo Nemes (Australia)

Sunday 
10:00AM Worship service and Lord’s supper. 
Devotion,congregational and special music, testimonials 
Sermon by the Rev. Sandor Kulcsar, president of the Convention 
1:00PM Lunch

Extensive road work on I-75. 
Please call us if you need up to date help with directions.

Hotel info: Recommended Hotel: Cross Country Inn, Southgate, 
free phone: 1-800-621-1429. 
Reservation Nr: RGI 230725, Hungarian Baptist Church 1 room for 1 person $54.99 1 room for 2 persons $61.00 (Ask for senior discont of 25% - if applicable, 60 and up - at checkout!) Call for more hotel choices or if above sold out.

Expenses at the convention
Registration: $3.00, registration for a family: $5.00 
Lunch and dinner served at the church $7.00 each/person 
Please advise us of your coming as we want to be prepared to serve our guests. 
Phone, e-mail or letter (address above and on the second page).

Gone to be with the Lord

Elinore Dudics Pato went to be with the Lord on June 5, 2002. After a long illness, she was welcomed home by the Heavenly Father that she had served for all of her life. Her parents were God fearing people and Elinore followed their example and she accepted the Lord as her savior at an early age. She attended the Sullivan Memorial Baptist Church and later retire to Florida and attended our Bethesda Baptist Church in Palm Bay, Florida. She loved her Lord and had been faithful in serving Him. Of late, she had suffered much pain and discomfort, but she faithfully attended worship services as often as she could. She did not complain because she knew that soon she would be meeting her savior where there will no longer be any pain or sorrow. She is survived by a son, Frank, a daughter, Sandra, two brothers, Frank and Paul and one sister, Theresa Wright

AAnd I heard a great voice out of heaven saying, Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and he will dwell with them, and they shall be his people, and God himself shall be with them, and be their God. And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes, and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain, for the former things are passed away.@ Happy are those who truly have these promises.

***

Elizabeth Bakor went to be with the Lord on June 6, 2002. For most of her 95 years she had served the Lord faithfully. Both she and her husband, Alexander, had been residents at our Bethesda Home. They both were members of our Bethesda Baptist church and were faithful servants to their Lord. Her husband, Alex died in 1990 and she lived with relatives since his passing. He is resting in our Bethesda garden and Elizabeth will join him there and await the day when AThe dead shall rise first and meet their Lord together, In the air.@ What a joy that will be.

               Ernest J. Kish

 See the page on the recent concert tour of the Hungarian Baptist Central Choir 
Lots of pictures.

A prayer to be heard
Kansas State Senate
 
When Minister Joe Wright was asked to open the new session of the Kansas Senate, everyone was expecting the usual generalities, but this is what they heard:
The prayer:
 
Heavenly Father, we come before you today to ask your forgiveness and to seek your direction and guidance.
We know Your Word says, "Woe to those who call evil good," but that is exactly what we have done. We have lost our spiritual equilibrium and reversed our values.
We confess that:
We have ridiculed the absolute truth of Your Word and called it Pluralism.
We have worshiped other gods and called it multiculturalism.
We have endorsed perversion and called it alternative lifestyle.
We have exploited the poor and called it the lottery.
We have rewarded laziness and called it welfare.
We have killed our unborn and called it choice.
We have shot abortionists and called it justifiable.
We have neglected to discipline our children and called it building self-esteem.
We have abused power and called it politics.
We have coveted our neighbor's possessions and called it ambition.
We have polluted the air with profanity and pornography and called it freedom of expression.
We have ridiculed the time-honored values of our forefathers and called it enlightenment.
We have convinced ourselves that we have the power to destroy the earth and called it environmentalism.
Search us, Oh, God, and know our hearts today; cleanse us from every sin and set us free. Guide and bless these men and women who have been sent to direct us to the center of Your will. I ask it in the name of Your Son, the living Savior, Jesus Christ. Amen!
 
The response was immediate. A number of legislators walked out during the prayer in protest. In 6 short weeks, Central Christian Church, where Rev. Wright is pastor, logged more than 5,000 phone calls with only 47 of those calls responding negatively. The church is now receiving international requests for copies of this prayer from India, Africa, and Korea.
Commentator Paul Harvey aired this prayer on his radio program, The Rest of the Story, and received a larger response to this program than any other he has ever aired.
With the Lord's help, may this prayer sweep over our nation and wholeheartedly become our desire so that we again can be called one nation under God.

Reconciliation and Growth

How do you deal with divisive political history in a denomination? The Baptist Union of Romania (BUR) decided reconciliation with their Communist past is better than political or legal judgments against their own people. This is specifically directed at pastors who may have cooperated with the secret police during the years of Communism in which many Baptist pastors and people were persecuted. One of those persecuted was Paul Negrut, now president of BUR.

In a visit to the BWA on February 5, Negrut reported that Romanian Baptists agreed to deal with their Communist past in a Biblical, pastoral way. Each pastor who may have cooperated with the secret police has been asked to declare the facts. AOnce that is done there will be no judicial decision, but we will deal with this pastorally and forgive the person and move on,@ he said. ABecause of this there is no tension from the past and we can focus on evangelism and church growth as our priority,@ Negrut said. (BWA News)

WHY DON'T YOU TALK TO ME? 

As you got up this morning, I watched you, and hoped you would talk to Me, even if it was just a few words, asking my opinion or thanking Me for something good that happened in your life yesterday. But I noticed you were too busy, trying to find the right outfit to wear. When you ran around the house getting ready, I knew there would be a few minutes for you to stop and say hello, but you were too busy.

At one point you had to wait fifteen minutes with nothing to do except sit in a chair. Then I saw you spring to your feet. I thought you wanted to talk to Me but you ran to the phone and called a friend to get the latest gossip instead. I watched patiently all day long. With all your activities I guess you were too busy to say anything to Me. I noticed that before lunch you looked around, maybe you felt embarrassed to talk to Me, that is why you didn't bow your head. You glanced three or four tables over and you noticed some of your friends talking to Me briefly before they ate, but you didn't. That's okay.

There is still more time left, and I hope that you will talk to Me yet. You went home and it seems as if you had lots of things to do. After a few of them were done, you turned on the TV. I don't know if you like TV or not, just about anything goes there and you spend a lot of time each day in front of it not thinking about anything, just enjoying the show. I waited patiently again as you watched the TV and ate your meal, but again you didn't talk to Me. Bedtime, - I guess you felt too tired. After you said goodnight to your family, you plopped into bed and fell asleep in no time. That's okay because you may not realize that I am always there for you.

I've got patience, more than you will ever know. I even want to teach you how to be patient with others as well. I love you so much that I wait everyday for a nod, prayer or thought or a thankful part of your heart. It is hard to have a one-sided conversation. Well, you are getting up once again. And once again I will wait, with nothing but love for you. Hoping that today you will give me some time. Have a nice day!

               Your friend, GOD

HYMNS AND PROFESSIONS
 
The Dentist's Hymn: Crown Him With Many Crowns
The Weatherman's Hymn: There Shall Be Showers of Blessing
The Contractor's Hymn: The Church's One Foundation
The Tailor's Hymn: Holy, Holy, Holy
The Golfer's Hymn: There is A Green Hill Far Away
The Politician's Hymn: Standing on the Promises
The Optometrist's Hymn: Open My Eyes That I Might See
The IRS Agent's Hymn: I Surrender All
The Gossip's Hymn: Pass It On
The Electrician's Hymn: Send the Light
The Shopper's Hymn: Sweet By and By
The Realtor's Hymn: I've Got A Mansion Just Over the Hilltop
The Pilot's Hymn: I'll Fly Away
The Paramedic's Hymn: Revive Us Again
The Judge's Hymn: Almost Persuaded
The Psychiatrist's Hymn: Just A Little Talk With Jesus
The Architect's Hymn: How Firm A Foundation
 
Take Time
 
Take Time to laugh - It is the music of the soul.
Take time to think - It is the source of power.
Take time to play - It is the source of perpetual youth.
Take time to read - It is the fountain of wisdom.
Take time to pray - It is the greatest power on earth.
Take time to love and be loved - It is a God-given privilege.
Take time to be friendly - It is the road to happiness.
Take time to give - It is too short a day to be selfish.
Take time to work - It is the price of success.
       Anonymous

May, 2002

Our Mid Year Get Together

For many years our Convention officers and committees have held their midyear planning sessions at our Retirement Home here in Palm Bay, Florida. At these sessions we plan our mission projects for the ensuing year. Our pastors and our committee personnel then work hard to implement the plans that were decided upon during these sessions.

Our Pastors and committees met here on April 11th through the 14th and they made their plans for the year 2002 2003. They arrived on the 10th and were greeted by 80 degree temperatures. This was a far cry from the cold temperatures that they left a few hours earlier. We at Bethesda welcomed them warmly and made them comfortable either on our own premises or at a local motel. Because we know that our people work hard all year on our Intended projects, we feel that a little bit of relaxation is in order for them. We therefore planned a Jungle River Cruise for them. They enjoyed seeing dolphins, alligators and other wild life In our Florida’s Wild Life Sanctuary. We saw God’s creations as they were when God created our land. When we finished our cruise we presented our people with an outdoor barbecue consisting of chicken and ribs. This was enjoyed by all. This was capped off by some Hungarian pastries prepared by our local ladies. After all of the treats, It was time to get down to serious business. On Friday morning we met for a period of meditation conducted by our local pastor the Rev Denzel Alexander. After our prayers, the Missions Committee and the Finance Committee went into session to make plans for the future activities that will be put into being during the coming year. Each of these committees have been charged by our Convention to formulate and put into being our mission programs and our finances for the ensuing year. In addition to the needs within our own Country, mission programs were approved for Hungarian missions in Slovakia, Romania, and Szerbia. Of the approved budget, approximately 35% had been approved for foreign missions and 55% for Home missions. It is our hope and prayer that we will be able to meet all of these important commitments.


The Mission and Literary Committe in session

More pictures here

The Bethesda Home hosted over forty delegates with meals and housing. This was a mammoth job for our staff. Our cooks and servers and our cleaning personnel did an outstanding job to satisfy all that was required of them. They did so with grace and dedication. We have faithful employees who work hard to fulfill their assigned responsibilities. We are grateful to God for each of them. Many of our employees are Christian individuals. They love our residents and those others who are responsible for the operation of the Home. Your prayers for us are often answered beyond that for what we ask. God has been good to us and we continue to praise His name for it. We also celebrated the birthday of one of our old time Convention members. Esther Bankuti celebrated her 90th birthday. Well wishes came from many of her friends.


Happy Birthday Eszter (Bankúti)! (90)

More pictures here

Our Committee members often joined In songs of praises after each breakfast and lunch. Our Hungarian people love to sing and our Home residents really enjoyed hearing our music. At times they joined us In our musical praises and it was a joy to see the glow on their faces when they joined us in singing Amazing Grace and Jesus loves me this I know.

At this time our members are at home and each of them can have pleasant memories of a time of Christian fellowship and satisfaction In doing Cod’s work. We started our sessions by asking God to direct our efforts and we ended by asking God for help in Implementing the plans that we made.

May all that we have planned be fruitful and effective in the building of His kingdom.

Ernest J. Kish

 

WHAT THE WORLD EXPECTS OF CHRISTIANS
Acts 3:1C6
By Dr. Charles Molnár

The apostles Peter and John were on their way to the temple in Jerusalem at the hour of the midCafternoon prayer, when a man who was lame from birth cried out to them as they came to the Beautiful gate, asking them for alms. The two apostles approached the temple with the expectation of entering into fellowship with God. The poor beggar cried out expecting to receive some material gift. As things turned out, they all received more than they expected. The apostles felt a sudden surge of the Holy Spirit, and in that power they were able to perform a miracle of healing and proclaim the Word with power. The poor beggar received what many thought would have been impossible: the miracle of healing and a new joy and power to witness to the people concerning his new-found freedom of movement and spirit.

When we approach the place of worship at the hour of prayer, do we come with great expectations or scaled down expectations? What kind of preparations do we make for the encounter with God? What happens in our lives during the week? What happens during the time just preceding our worshiping and praying?

There are some people who come seeking inspiration, to find greater meaning in life and work, to find some answer to deep needs for forgiveness, friendship, strength to do what is right, strength to avoid doing what is wrong. Some come asking for help with finances, some hoping to find clues to a way to proceed in their search for food or employment. And there are some who come just out of old habit, not expecting to find anything meaningful or any new encounter with God. And, alas, there are even some who come with negative expectations. . . As Robert Louis Stevenson is reported to have said on one occasion: "I have been to church, and I am not depressed!"

Isn’t it amazing that the God of grace often exceeds our expectations!

And as people around us observe and evaluate our lives and our testimony, they build up their own set of expectations concerning our attitudes and behavior. Here is a partial list of what they expect of us.

1. The world expects Christians to go to church regularly, in anticipation of meeting God there in new and meaningful ways.

Because of that we have many opportunities to demonstrate the difference regular prayer and fellowship makes in our lives, as we are filled repeatedly with God’s sustaining power. We also go to church to express to God that we love Him and desire to serve Him. Going to church is our way of preparing for the time when God will send us new people to witness to.

2. The world expects Christians to show love to friends and enemies as well. In keeping with what we learned from Christ and what we often profess, the world can justly expect Christians to live up to those noble standards. Jesus said "You have heard that it has been said, You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy. But I say to you, Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you." (Matthew 5:43-44) Whenever we face opportunities to show love instead of a judgmental attitude, we should think of the choices before us, and choose the way of love.

3. The world expects christians to be genuine in attitudes and actions. One of the criticisms hurled at church-going christians is that they often turn out to be hypocrites. That they are showing their acts of love in order to be praised by others, or to go one better than their neighbors. Yet, in spite of suspicions that result in cynicism, unbelievers and people who do not worship still cling to the hope that somehow, somewhere, they will find some Christians who will prove to be really genuine.

4. The world expects Christians to be "good news" people. In the letter to the Philippians the apostle Paul repeatedly urges believers to "rejoice in the Lord!" We are to be bearers of "good news" in the midst of a world filled with bad news. Peter responded to the pleadings of the crippled man by giving what at first seemed "bad news" (silver and gold have I none), bit then concluded with some really "good news" (in the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, walk!). It may not have been granted to all of us to heal those in need of healing, nevertheless we should and can be happy in all that God has granted to us, and use our spiritual gifts in order to shed light on the path of those who are seeking for truth. Some of the fruits of the Holy Spirit are: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, self control. Showing any one or more of those fruits in our dealings with people can prove us to be real "good news" people, spreaders of the "evangelion."

5. The world expects Christians to share their faith. Yes, they do, although they may not want to hear about it at first. They are afraid that there would always be a note of condemnation in what Christians may say in their testimony. So they want to withdraw, to protect themselves from a comparison that will inevitably be set up between the Gospel standard and their own way of thinking. If Christians truly obey the commandment to "go into all the world and preach the Gospel," they cannot hold back from witnessing to their faith. The world does indeed have a right to expect that those who have experienced the love of God in their own lives will also invite their neighbors to share in that experience...

Peter and John went up to the Temple at the (mid-afternoon) hour of prayer and at the "Beautiful Gate" they encountered the man who was born a cripple. Somebody always had to carry that man and position him there, to spend his day begging. Many years of depending on the generosity of people to provide for his sustenance must have dulled his sense of expectation. How could he have asked for healing, instead of just alms? And yet, this episode teaches us that we should always come to the place of worship with "great expectations" because we have a great God who has the power to transform us. Moving through life may often seem like exploring an unfamiliar neighborhood along streets that have many turns, many corners. Yet, as a humble believer once expressed it, "God in His loving-kindness will meet us around every corner."

While we should be aware of what the world may expect of us, we should not forget what God expects of us, as revealed through the prophet Micah "He has showed you, o man, what is good; and what does the Lord require of you but to do justice, to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God." (5:8) At the healing that came to the lame man, he leaped up on those formerly useless limbs, and walked about -- and his first steps took him into the Temple to give thanks and to praise God! We should also be ready to join the spiritually "lame" people who find healing through the word of God as we shout for joy and celebrate the mighty works of God in the lives of people.

April 2002
The Hungarian Baptist Central Choir
North-American Tour - May 23 - June 11

Introducing the choir
(Excerpt from the choir's pamphlet)

The Hungarian Baptist Central Choir was founded in 1957, by Jenő Bányai choir master, and Pál Beharka, organ-artist. Since 1982, Gábor Oláh has been the artistic master of the Choir, assisted in his work by Miklós Oláh, conductor, and Imre Pátkai, piano-artist. The repertoire of our Choir primarily includes the Baptist choruses that have been sung by the local church choirs in Hungary since the time of their establishment. Naturally, our Choir also sings pieces of universal classic choir music that is in harmony with the Choir's belief and conviction. Our Choir is pleased to sing the simple musical settings just as well as the more difficult choruses and the highly elaborate and at the same time the most magnificent oratorios among musical compositions. The compositions of Hungarian composers, e.g. Ferenc Liszt, Zoltán Kodály, Béla Bartók, Lajos Bárdos, Gábor Lisznyay, Ferenc Farkas, Zoltán Gárdonyi etc. are of outstanding importance even among compositions of universal fame.

(Click for a large picture)

Apart from the ministry performed in the Baptist Fellowship, the Hungarian Baptist Central Choir also performs at different ecumenical events, events for charity purposes of non-ecclesiastical organization and concerts not organized by the Church. This is how the Choir performed Mozart's Requiem in cooperation with the Symphonic Orchestra of the Danish Radio at the Budapest Spring Festival of 1999, conducted by Ádám Fischer, a conductor of international fame.

In March 1991, the Hungarian Baptist Central Choir received Golden Diploma in the category of large mixed choruses, at the 3rd International Choir Competition held in Budapest.

A large number of records and audio-cassettes have been made with the Choir to record the performance of a broad scale of compositions, including the simplest songs just as well as the grand oratorios and many more. The Choir gives live concerts on a regular basis in the studios of the Hungarian Radio. Films have been made on our Choir by the Hungarian Television and the Duna Television on a number of occasions.

The Hungarian Baptist Central Choir has acquired good reputation outside Hungary for the benefit of the Hungarian Baptist Fellowship and the Hungarian musical culture. So far, the Choir has visited the following countries: Austria, Switzerland, Germany, Slovakia, Sweden, the Netherlands, Romania (Transylvania), and Yugoslavia.  

More on the Choir

"JESUS HELP ME"

The Faith of Todd Beamer:"I don't think we're going to get out of this thing. I'm going to have to go out on faith." It was the voice of Todd Beamer, the passenger -- and Wheaton College graduate -- who said "Let's roll" as he led the charge against the terrorists who had hijacked United Flight 93. The one, you will remember, that crashed in the Pennsylvania countryside.

The whole world knows how brave Beamer and his fellow passengers were on September 11. But this week we learned more fully what buttressed that bravery: Faith in Jesus Christ.

Todd died as he lived, a faithful evangelical believer. In an article titled "The Real Story of Flight 93," Newsweek reveals gripping new details from the actual transcripts of the now-recovered cockpit voice recorder.

"Todd had been afraid," Newsweek relates. "More than once, he cried out for his Savior." After passengers were herded to the back of the jet, Beamer called the GTE Customer Center in Oakbrook, Illinois. He told supervisor Lisa Jefferson about the hijacking. The passengers were planning to jump the terrorists, he said. And then he asked her to pray with him.

As Newsweek relates, "Beamer kept a Lord's Prayer bookmark in his Tom Clancy novel, but he didn't need any prompting. He began to recite the ancient litany, and Jefferson joined him: "Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name." As they finished, Beamer added, "Jesus, help me."

And then, Beamer and his fellow passengers prayed a prayer that has comforted millions down through the centuries -- the prayer that David wrote in a time of great anguish: "The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want . . Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil." And then the famous last words: "Are you guys ready? Let's roll."

We now know from the cockpit voice recorder that Beamer and other passengers wrestled with the hijackers and forced the plane to crash into he ground, killing themselves but foiling what was believed to have been the hijackers' plan to fly Flight 93 into the Capitol or the White House.

As Christians, we know that God can bring good out of evil. In Todd Beamer, the world witnesses a faith that held up in the extremity of fear. A faith that is even now comforting his widow and two young sons. Lisa Beamer told NBC's Dateline, "You know, in the Lord's Prayer, it asks us to forgive our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us." As Todd prayed this prayer in the last moments of his life, in a way, Lisa said, "He was forgiving those people for what they were doing, the most horrible thing you could ever do to someone."

It wasn't Todd Beamer's job to fight terrorists. He was just a passenger who along with several others did what he didn't have to do but foiled a terrible evil that might have been done to his country. As Flight 93 hurtled towards destruction, Todd Beamer could not have known that his quiet prayers would ultimately be heard by millions -- that the story of his last acts on earth would be a witness to the Lord he loved and served, and a lasting example of true heroism.

      Submitted by Klara Vereczky Malis

Our Hungarian Heritage

We who are of Hungarian heritage are a very proud people. And we have much to be proud of. We have made our presence known in many areas. We have distinguished ourselves in the field of science, medicine, music, sports and in many other areas that have impacted the lives of mankind throughout the world.

I have however often wondered what those of us who are of the second, third and even fourth generation have contributed to the betterment of humanity. I have even reduced that area down to what we second, third and even fourth generation Hungarian Baptist individuals have done for the progress of mankind. As I think back at some of my own acquaintances among our first generation Hungarian Baptist individuals, I remember individuals who have attained high recognition in the field of Engineering, in Law, in the Teaching profession and in Manufacturing skills. There were many who distinguished themselves in these areas. To my knowledge, we even had the son of one of Hungarian Baptist preacher attain the position of a Juvenile Judge in California. He was the son of The Rev. Joseph Batka, who was our pastor in the city of South Norwalk, Connecticut. The Yanik boys in Buffalo, New York, owned a large fleet of trucks and transported all sorts of goods throughout the USA and Canada. My own brother Julius owns and operates a large Tool and Die Manufacturing plant in Bridgeport, Connecticut. My brother Elmer was Dean of Students’ at one of the High Schools in Connecticut. There were many more Hungarian Baptist Individuals who made their Christian background felt in all of their business and professional dealings.

I must however make mention here of some of the accomplishments made by the second, third, and fourth generation of a number of our old time pastors. Many of us remember the Rev. Michael Biro, Sr., the Rev. Joseph Kovach, the Rev. Michael Biro, Jr. and the Rev. Emil Balla. All of these pastors served our Hungarian Baptist Churches. Today, a granddaughter of the Rev. Michael Biro, Jr., a great granddaughter of the Rev. Michael Biro, Sr., and a great granddaughter of the Rev. Joseph Kovach and a niece of the Rev. Emil Balla and the Rev. Joseph Forcurelli, and a first cousin of the Rev. Michael Summers, who is a grandson of the Rev. Michael Biro, Jr. are serving in the mission fields.

In addition, the Rev. Michael Biro, Jrs., granddaughter Lori Christianson, is working for Franklin Graham in his program with The Shoe Box Christmas program.

In addition to the above, second generation Hungarian Baptists have also received the call of service in the field of ministry. The two sons of the Rev. George Balla followed their father into the field of ministry.

All of the above are the products of Hungarian Baptist individuals. We seem to think at times that our work is at a standstill and that we are not making any progress. God however works His mysteries after we have planted the seed. Let us not lose courage and hope. If we give our children the right example and background, God will work wonders with the seed that has been planted, even amongst our Hungarian Baptist generations.

         Ernest J. Kish

March, 2002

MOTHER  MARY
by Klari Vereczki Malis

Some of us are mothers. Some of us have endured the tragic grief of losing a son or daughter. People say there's no pain as heart-rending as that of a loving mother whose child has been taken from her.
     Most of us would agree.
     Then, imagine what the mother of Jesus must have endured as she witnessed her beloved child hanging from Calvary's cross of shame. Only Mary knew that Jesus was the Son of God, born of her - a virgin.
     He was innocent of any wrongdoing, yet beaten and tortured like a criminal.
     He was gentle and compassionate, yet savagely cursed, slapped and spit upon.
     He was sinless, yet He was nailed on a cross to hang naked between two criminals.

Oh Mother Mary! How you must have suffered!
     Would you have imagined a moment like this when you looked into the innocent, trusting eyes of your babe in the Bethlehem stable?
     Would you have imagined agony like this as you taught your young child the tenets of the Torah?
     Would you have thought that the very same men who marveled at His wisdom would detest Jesus to the point of demanding His torture and death to free Barabbas?
     Mary, oh Mary, sweet Mother of God! How you must have suffered on that day two thousand years ago.
     How discouraged and distraught you must have been, looking into the suffering eyes of Jesus and watching the horrible death of your precious Son!
     Yet, little did you realize, Mary, that in a few days the manner in which Jesus would look at you would be so different from terrible day.
     After His glorious resurrection, I believe Mary's Son must have looked at His mother with a special kind of devotion and compassion. A radiant Jesus, now the risen Son of God, would tenderly gaze at you, Mary, knowing He had made the ultimate sacrifice not only for His loving mother, but for all humanity.

Victory!!!!!

Wouldn't You Just Know It?
 
It was Palm Sunday, and the mother's three-year-old son had to stay home from church and Sunday school with strep throat. When the rest of the family returned home carrying palm branches, the little boy asked what they were for.
      His mother explained, "People held them over Jesus' head as He walked by."
     "Wouldn't you know it," the boy fumed. "The one Sunday I don't go, and Jesus shows up."
 
RESURRECTION
 
Here is a letter written to a local advice column along with the response:
      Dear Eutychus:
      Our preacher said, on Easter, that Jesus just swooned on the cross and that the disciples nursed Him back to health. What do you think?
                   Sincerely, Bewildered
 
Dear Bewildered:
       Beat your preacher with a cat-of-nine-tails with 39 heavy strokes, nail him to a cross; hang him in the sun for 6 hours; run a spear through his heart; embalm him; put him in an airless tomb for 36 hours and see what happens.
       Sincerely, Eutychus

MAKE THIS YOUR PRAYER
By Rev. Barton. A. Brown

Heavenly Father: There is one thing we all can do - we all can pray. And we can all pray wherever we are. Since You are everywhere, and not confined to sacred places, we can talk to You. You never tire or sleep, we may pray at any time. Since You are not limited by language, You accept each of us as we speak in our native tongue.
     Our difficulty is that we do not pray as much as we should. some folk are not sure of the value of prayer. Some would rather worry than pray. Some prefer to wait until desperation comes before they pray. Your Son cautioned that people should always pray, so they will not fall out.
     We have learned that prayer need not be confined to a place of worship, although it is appropriate there. You, our Father, are available at any given time. We need not carry our burdens alone, and we do not need to travel through life by ourselves. We count it a privilege to be able to come in prayer.
      We pray for forgiveness of our shortcomings and sins. There is no one else to whom we may go. You O Lord, have made it possible for us to come. We have been forgiven because we have believed in Him whom You sent, our Lord Jesus Christ. We pray that we may be more like Him!
      We pray for friends and loved ones who have special needs today. Some are older and are tired of the fast pace. Some have fallen on hard times, and even wonder if any one cares for them. Some suffer hardship and pain, and need comfort and ease. Some are troubled by anxiety and depression. Send them the peace that You can give. Some are lonely and afraid. Be near to them, and assure them of Your love.
      Bless those who are concerned about the needs of people who cannot take care of themselves. So many of our people must struggle with great handicaps and privations. Bless all whose concern takes them where there are folk who need a helping hand. Bless their efforts with success.
      We appreciate our blessings: the guidance of the past, our present situations, our future hopes. We accept our blessings with thanks, and we pray that we may have opportunities to share with those who are less fortunate.
      We come to You through Jesus, who opened our way by His great sacrifice. We come humbly, yet with assurance. Draw us by the power of Your Holy Spirit, and we shall worship in spirit and in truth.
      We pray in Christ's name. Amen.

EDWARD  KISH

My youngest brother, Edward Kish went to be with the Lord on February 5, 2002. He was the youngest member of the first generation of the Kish family. What can I write about a man who loved the Lord and served Him for most of his 74 years. He accepted the Lord as his Savior at our Silliman Memorial Baptist Church in Bridgeport, Connecticut and took an active part in the mission of the church. He was a member of its band, and later, its conductor. He was also a Sunday School teacher, a youth leader, its choir master and a deacon. He was a product of a Christ centered group of believers and he worked tirelessly to build God’s kingdom wherever he lived. In his quiet nature and strong faith, he lived his life as a true witness for his Lord. As an electrical engineer, he also had many opportunities to testily of God’s greatness with surety to professional colleges and associates. After retirement, he moved to a small village in northern Vermont where he joined a small church and became extremely active in its Christian ministry. They wrote of him as follows: "Ed, we were blessed to have had you to share our lives. We rejoice that you now share the eternal joy of your beloved Savior." Edward is survived by his loving wife, Loraine of 51 years, three sons, Edward Jr., Keith, and David, their wives and eight grandchildren. He is also survived by three brothers, Ernest, Julius and Elmer, as well as two sisters Marguerite Stumpf and Helen Kautz.

In his final message to all of us, he mentions the effect that our God loving parents had on his life and asked us all to remain faithful to our Heavenly Father as he looks forward to meeting all of us in our Heavenly Home. His favorite verse of scripture was, "Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on you own understanding, in all your ways acknowledge Him and He shall direct your path." Prov. 3:5-6

Ed Is now with the Lord that he loved so much. He has heard God’s call as found in Matthew 25: 21 "Well done, thou good and faithful servant, thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will make thee ruler over many things, enter thou into the joy of the Lord." He is now awaiting the day when we all will meet in that Home that has been promised to all who love and follow our Lord and Our Savior.

A loving brother, Ernest J. Kish

BIBLE QUIZ                
 
Many people qoute things as being from the Bible that are not there. Can you identify which of these quotations are from the Bible? If you get all the Bible qoutes correct, you are a good Bible student. If you can identify the sources of all twenty quotes, you are a walking encyclopedia.
1. The fool doth think he is wise, but the wise man knows himself to be a fool.
2. Open rebuke is better than secret love.
3. A fool and his money are soon parted.
4. Every day is a message of God.
5. No man can serve two masters.
6. A merry heart doeth good like a medicine.
7. Cast thy bread upon the waters for thou shall find it after many days.
8. It is a wise father that knows his own child.
9. The way to a mans heart is through his stomach.
10. Fair weather cometh out of the north.
11. The good deed drives away the evil deeds.
12. Can two walk together, except they be agreed?
13. Not life, but a good life, is to be chiefly valued.
14. There's a divinity that shapes our ends, rough-hew them how we will.
15. I am escaped with the skin of my teeth.
16. Let us eat and drink, for tomorrow we die.
17. A continual dropping in a very rainy day and a contentious woman are alike.
18. Make haste slowly.
19. We have left undone those things which we ought to have done, and we have done those things which we ought not to have done.
20. Weeping may endure for a night, but joy cometh in the morning.

Originaly printed a year ago. We received only two good answers to this quiz (Ilona Mezei and Nick Jenei). Was it too hard?

ANSWERS TO BIBLE QUIZ

1. Shakespeare in As You Like It; 2. Proverbs 27:5; 3. Current sayings since the 16th century; 4. Russian proverbs; 5. Matthew 6;24; 6. Proverbs 17:22; 7. Ecclesiastes 11:1; 8. Shakespeare in Merchant of Venice; 9. Current since the 19th century; 10. Job 37:22; 11. The Koran; 12. Amos 2:6; 13. Plato; 14. Shakespeare in Hamlet; 15. Job 19:20; 16. Isaiah 22:13; 17. Proverbs 27:15; 18. From the Greek; 19. Book of common prayer; 20. Psalm 30:5.

PEARLS

The cheerful girl with bouncy golden curls was almost five. Waiting with her mother at the checkout stand, she saw them: a circle of glistening white pearls in a pink foil box. "Oh please, Mommy. Can I have them? Please, Mommy, please?" 
      Quickly the mother checked the back of the little foil box and then looked back into the pleading blue eyes of her little girl's upturned face. "A dollar ninety-five. That's almost $2.00. If you really want them, I'll think of some extra chores for you and in no time you can save enough money to buy them for yourself. Your birthday's only a week away and you might get another crisp dollar bill from Grandma." 
      As soon as Jenny got home, she emptied her penny bank and counted out 17 pennies. After dinner, she did more than her share of chores and she went to the neighbor and asked Mrs. McJames if she could pick dandelions for ten cents. On her birthday, Grandma did give her another new dollar bill and at last she had enough money to buy the necklace. Jenny loved her pearls. They made her feel dressed up and grown up. She wore them everywhere.
     Jenny had a very loving daddy and every night when she was ready for bed, he would stop whatever he was doing and come upstairs to read her a story. One night when he finished the story, he asked Jenny, "Do you love me?" 
     "Oh yes, Daddy. You know that I love you." 
     "Then give me your pearls." 
     "Oh, Daddy, not my pearls. But you can have Princess - the white horse from my collection. The one with the pink tail.
Remember, Daddy? The one you gave me. She's my favorite." 
     "That's okay, Honey. Daddy loves you. Good night."
And he brushed her cheek with a kiss. 

About a week later, after the story time, Jenny's daddy asked again, "Do you love me?" 
     "Daddy, you know I love you." 
     "Then give me your pearls." 
     "Oh Daddy, not my pearls. But you can have my baby doll. The brand new one I got for my birthday. She is so beautiful and you can have the yellow blanket that matches her sleeper." 
     "That's okay. Sleep well. God bless you, little one. Daddy loves you"
And as always, he brushed her cheek with a gentle kiss. 

A few nights later when her daddy came in, Jenny was sitting on her bed with her legs crossed Indian-style. As he came close, he noticed her chin was trembling and one silent tear rolled down her cheek. 

     "What is it, Jenny? What's the matter?" 
     Jenny didn't say anything but lifted her little hand up to her daddy. And when she opened it, there was her little pearl necklace. With a little quiver, she finally said, "Here, Daddy. It's for you." 
     With tears gathering in his own eyes, Jenny's kind daddy reached out with one hand to take the dime-store necklace, and with the other hand he reached into his pocket and pulled out a blue velvet case with a strand of genuine pearls and gave them to Jenny. He had them all the time. He was just waiting for her to give up the dime-store stuff so he could give her the genuine treasure.

So it is with our Heavenly Father. He is waiting for us to give up the cheap things in our lives so that he can give us beautiful treasure. Isn't God good? Are you holding onto things which God wants you to let go of. Are you holding on to harmful or unnecessary partners, relationships, habits and activities which you have come so attached to that it seems impossible to let go? Sometimes it is so hard to see what is in the other hand, but do believe this one thing -God will never take away something without giving you something better in its place. (Anonym)

 

 

February, 2002

December at Bethesda

The celebration of the birth of our Lord and Savior is celebrated in various ways throughout the Christian world. In many places, the celebration is commercialized to a point where the real reason for the celebration is completely lost. It is gratifying however to see that in certain areas we can still feel the real reason for the celebration. Bethesda is one of those places. We indicate to our residents that the real reason for the celebration is the birth of our Lord and Savior. The glitter and sparkle associated with Christmas adds to our celebration in a way that can bring glory and beauty to the real reason for the celebration at Bethesda, we try to make our elderly residents give thought to the fact that God sent His son to earth in a human form in order to make salvation possible for mankind to gain everlasting life through the birth of the one who Is being celebrated. Our elderly residents have so many beautiful memories of past Christmas’. The memories of loved ones and friends who are now gone from view bring back for them blessed memories of earlier days. The celebration of Christ’s birth has special meaning to elderly folks at Bethesda, all of our programs during the month of December emphasize the real reason for the celebration. We have not only our own organizations to help in our celebration but also many outside organizations to help us remember the reason for celebrating. In addition, we see to it that everyone of our 69 residents receive little gifts as a token of our love for them. We also had many local organizations put on programs of praise for our residents. We even had a motorcycle club drive up to the Home and offer rides in their side cars to the residents. This they enjoyed very much. Thus, our residents had a joyful way of celebrating Christmas. For many, it may have been a final Christmas celebration and they celebrated the birth of our Lord and Savior In such a meaningful way.

Your Home also has over thirty faithful employees. As a Christian organization, we also remembered them In a meaningful way as a reward for their faithful services. God has been good to Bethesda and we try hard to indicated to all people that we love them and appreciate their services to our elderly residents. Please remember us in your prayers for God to grant us patience and loving care for those whom He has placed in our care.          Ernest J. Kish

The Silliman Memorial Baptist Church
Bridgeport, Connecticut

The Silliman Memorial Baptist Church celebrated their 90th year of proclaiming Gods word on December 2, 2001. This church for many years proclaimed the word of God to our Hungarian speaking population. They were a very active group of people within our Hungarian Baptist Convention. Its members held important positions within our Convention and even today they are active within our organization. As is the situation with all ethnic groups, our old time Hungarian speaking people have died and are now enjoying the promises of God. The congregation many years ago decided to continue the services of the church in the English language and is now a vibrant body of Christians in their area. Their congregation now consists of African Americans, Haitians, some Hungarians and a number of other ethnic peoples. The word of God is still being preached and souls are being saved. Those of us who have served the Lord within that church are proud of our background and the accomplishments that have been made over the course of ninety years. Our Bethesda Baptist Retirement Home in Florida is a product of the Silliman church. We look back with joy at the accomplishments of its people, many of them now serve the business world as well as being teachers, doctors and lawyers. Many of these individuals are still active in our Convention and in the business world. We look with pride upon their accomplishments. For all that has been accomplished by member and former members of this church, we are grateful to God. A successful church is the result of much prayer and work by devoted people of God.

Since 1910, eight pastors have served this church. They were The Reverend Stephen Gazsi, The Reverend Ladislau Reeves, The Reverend Arthur Stumpf, The Reverend William B. Molnar, The Reverend David Lindsay, The Reverend George Rowe, The Reverend Robert Marshall and the Reverend Joseph Delehunt.

That, that had been started so many years ago by our old time Hungarian Baptist people is still an active force in proclaiming the word of God to all people. Let us continue to pray for that church body and trust their continuing effectiveness to our Lord and Heavenly Father.  Ernest J. Kish

SANTA MONICA

The Hungarian Bible Church of Santa Monica celebrated the 70th birthday of our pastor the Reverend John H. Vadasz on December 2, 2001. Both Frank and Sandor Vadasz came to celebrate their father=s birthday with us.

click for large picture Click for large picture.

May God continue to bless him with many more years of health, joy and happiness. Helen Olah

REMEMBERING MRS. ELIZABETH BALLA

On January 5, 2002, at age 93, Mrs. Elizabeth Balla went to be with the Lord. Rev. Denzel Alexander, pastor of the Bethesda Baptist Church in Palm Bay, Florida, conducted the memorial service. Present were her four children, three of her seven grand-children, two of her twelve great grand-children and several long-time and beloved friends. Time was given during the service for those in attendance to share special memories they had of Mrs. Balla.

From her early teen years when she first accepted Christ as her Savior and Lord until her last days, she loved and served Him with great sincerity. Her children readily attest to that. Much to her influence they also came to faith in Christ.

Her marriage to Rev. George B. Balla included serving not only her family but serving in our Hungarian Baptist Churches also. During the Depression she was active in helping her husband care for many needy families, providing food, shelter, clothing and job searchings for them. In the New York City Church she helped many families coming from the 1950’s conflict in Hungary to be settled in America. She also stood by her husband and helped in the relocation of the Hungarian Baptist Retirement Home from Michigan to Florida. Many more things could be said of her love and care for others. Through those experiences she formed many loving and long-lasting friendships of which she often spoke. Her family is grateful that the Lord blessed them with a loving mother and friend for so many years.

George E. Balla

KEEP ON SINGING

Like any good mother, when Karen found out that another baby was on the way, she did what she could to help her 3-year-old son, Michael, prepare for a new sibling. They found out that the new baby was going to be a girl, and day after day, night after night, Michael sang to his sister in Mommy=s tummy. He was building a bond of love with his little sister before she even met her.

The pregnancy progressed normally for Karen, an active member of the Panther Creek United Methodist Church in Morristown, Tennessee In time, the labor pains came. Soon it was every five minutes... every three... every minute. But serious complications arose during delivery and Karen found herself in hours of labor. Would a C-section be required?

Finally, after a long struggle, Michael=s little sister was born. But she was in very serious condition. With a siren howling in the night, the ambulance rushed the infant to the neonatal intensive care unit at St. Mary=s Hospital, Knoxville, Tennessee.

The days inched by. The little girl got worse. The pediatric specialist regretfully had to tell the parents, AThere is very little hope. Be prepared for the worst.@ Karen and her husband contacted a local cemetery about a burial plot. They had fixed up a special room in their home for the new baby but now they found themselves having to plan for a funeral. Michael, however, kept begging his parents to let him see his sister. AI want to sing to her,@ he kept saying. Week two in intensive care looked as if a funeral would come before the week was over.

Michael kept nagging about singing to his sister, but kids are never allowed in Intensive Care. Karen made up her mind, though. She would take Michael whether they liked it or not! If he didn=t see his sister right then, he may never see her alive. She dressed him in an oversized scrub suit and marched him into ICU. He looked like a walking laundry basket.

But the head nurse recognized him as a child and bellowed, AGet that kid out of here now! No children are allowed@. The mother rose up strong in Karen, and the usually mild-mannered lady glared steel-eyed right into the head nurse=s face, her lips a firm line. AHe is not leaving until he sings to his sister!@

Karen towed Michael to his sister=s bedside. He gazed at the tiny infant losing the battle to live. After a moment, he began to sing. In the pure-hearted voice of a 3-year-old, Michael sang: AYou are my sunshine, my only sunshine, you make me happy when skies are gray...@ Instantly the baby girl seemed to respond. The pulse rate began to calm down and become steady. AKeep on singing, Michael,@ encouraged Karen with tears in her eyes. AYou never know, dear, how much I love you, Please don=t take my sunshine away.@ As Michael sang to his sister, the baby=s ragged, strained breathing became as smooth as a kitten=s purr. AKeep on singing, sweetheart!!!@ AThe other night, dear, as I lay sleeping, I dreamed I held you in my arms Michael=s little sister began to relax as rest, healing rest, seemed to sweep over her. AKeep on singing, Michael.@

Tears had now conquered the face of the bossy head nurse. Karen glowed. AYou are my sunshine, my only sunshine. Please don=t, take my sunshine away...@

The next day... the very next day... the little girl was well enough to go home! Woman=s Day Magazine called it AThe Miracle of a Brother=s Song.@

The medical staff just called it a miracle. Karen called it a miracle of God=s love!

Never give up on the people you love. Love is so incredibly powerful. (Anonymus)

Evangelicals Focus on the Heart at Expense of the Mind

Twentieth-century evangelicals have so focused on bare emotion and "winning the heart" that they are no longer contending intellectually for the faith in the public square, Phillip E. Johnson said during a recent conference at Southern Baptist Theological Seminary.

Johnson, a professor of law at the University of California at Berkeley, and author of several books on Darwinism and evolutionary naturalism -- including "Darwin on Trial," "Reason in the Balance" and his latest, "The Wedge of Truth" -- served as a guest lecturer at the Louisville, Ky., campus.

Johnson told Baptist Press he has grown increasingly frustrated at evangelicals' lack of boldness in defending their faith. "I am frustrated by many evangelicals who are indifferent to ideas, who don't understand that ideas have consequences," he said. "[Many] think they can preserve their faith by walling off a Christian subculture and somehow keep that independent of the mainstream culture -- the public schools, the television networks and so on.

"[Christians] are pretty good with feelings and the heart, but not so good with ideas and facts and knowledge," he said. "There is no reason why Christians have to be dumb. They can be well-educated, they can be very smart and they actually have a better starting place than the other side does." www.Crosswalk.com 

Entertainment business
(Don't let this happen!)

The Church of God has gone into the entertainment business! People must be amused, and as the church needs the people=s money, the church must supply the demand and meet the craving! How else are godless hypocrites to be held together? So the picture show and entertainment take the place of the gospel address and the solemn worship of God. And, thus, Christless souls are lulled to sleep and made to feel Areligious@ while gratifying every carnal desire under the sanction of the sham called the church! And the end? What an awakening [in eternity]!  H.A. Ironside

THINGS YOU NEVER HEAR IN CHURCH

1. Hey! It=s my turn to sit in the front pew.
2. I was so enthralled, I never noticed your sermon went 25 minutes over time.
3. Personally I find witnessing much more enjoyable than golf.
4. I=ve decided to give our church the $500 a month I used to send to TV evangelists.
5. I volunteer to be the permanent teacher for the junior high Sunday school class.
6. Forget the denominational minimum salary, let=s pay our pastor so he can live like we do.
7. I love it when we sing hymns I=ve never heard before!
8. Since we=re all here, let=s start the service early.
9. Pastor, we=d like to send you to this Bible seminar in the Bahamas.
10. Nothing inspires me and strengthens my commitment like our annual stewardship campaign!
 January, 2002.
AMERICA AGAIN !
By CARMAN
 
George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Samuel Adams, First Chief Justice John Jay, names synonymous with the spirit of our country. Founding Fathers of the U.S.A. Over 200 years ago they shook off the chains of tyranny from Great Britain by divine call. Citing 27 biblical violations they wrote the Declaration of Independence, A...With liberty and justice for all...@
     But something happened since Jefferson called the Bible the cornerstone for American liberty and then put it in our schools as a light. Or since Patrick Henry said, >Give me liberty or give me death." Our country was founded on the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
     We eliminated God from the equation of American life, thus eliminating the reason this nation first began. From beyond the grave I hear the voice of our Founding Fathers plead, AYou need God in America again.@
      Of the 55 men who formed the Constitution, 52 were active members of their church. Founding Fathers like Noah Webster who wrote the first dictionary could literally quote the Bible chapter and verse.
     James Madison once said, >We=ve staked our future on our ability to follow the Ten Commandments with all our heart." These men believed you couldn=t even call yourself an American if you subvert the Word of God.
     In his farewell address, Washington said, AYou can=t have national morality apart from religious principle,@ and it=s true because right now we have nearly 150,000 kids carrying guns to these war zones we call public schools.
     In the >40s and >50s student problems were chewing gum and talking. In the >90s, rape and murder are the trend. The only way this nation can even hope to list this decade is to put God in America again.

The only hope for America is Jesus
The only hope for our country is Him
If we repent of our ways
stand firm and say
We need God in America again
 
Abe Lincoln said, >The philosophy of the schoolroom in one generation will be the philosophy of government of the next." So when you eliminate the Word of God from the classroom and politics you eliminate the nation that Word protects. America is now number one in teen pregnancy and violent crime, number one in illiteracy, drug use and divorce. Every day a new holocaust of 5,000 unborn die while pornography floods our streets like open sewers.
     America=s dead and dying hand is on the threshold of the church while the spirit of Sodom and Gomorrah vex us all. When it gets to the point that people would rather come out of the closet than clean it, it=s the sign that the judgment of God is going to fall.
     If there=s ever been a time for the church to rise up it=s now. As the blood bought saints of the living God proclaim that it=s time to sound the alarm from the Church house to the White House and say, AWe want God in America again.@
     I believe it=s time for America to stand up and proclaim that one nation under God is our demand and send this evil lifestyle back to Satan where it came from and let the Word of God revive our dying land.
     For Jesus Christ is coming back again in all His glory, and every eye shall see Him on that day. That's why a new anointing of God's power's coming on us to boldly tell the world you must be saved.
     Because astrology won't save you, your horoscope won't save you. The Bible says these things are all a farce. If you are born again you don't need to look to the stars for your answers, 'cause you can look to the very One who made those stars.
     History tells us time and time again to live like there=s no God makes you a fool. If you want to see kids live right stop handing out condoms and start handing out the word of God in schools.
 
The only hope for America is Jesus
The only hope for our country is Him
If we repent of our ways
Stand firm and say
We need God in America again
(repeat)
 
We need God in America
God in America
God in America again.
 
Words and music by Carman, 1993.

A New Years Prayer
 
To be of greater service, Lord,
A closer student of Thy Word;
To help to bear a brother=s load
And cheer him on the heavenly road;
To tell the lost of Jesus= love,
And how to reach the home above;
To trust in God whatever befall,
Be ready at the Master=s call
For any task that He may give;
And thus through all the year to live
For Him who gave Himself for me
And taught me that my life should be
A life unselfish, not self-willed,
But with the Holy Spirit filled.
                                          Anonym

North Korea Aid

On a recent visit to the Democratic People=s Republic of Korea (DPRK) Paul Montacute, BWAid director, signed a lease to rent an apartment in the capital city of Pyongyang, which will be used as a base for staff to live and coordinate the distribution of relief supplies and other work. Montacute and Sandor Szenczy, the president of Hungarian Baptist Aid, negotiated the contract. On the visit, Liz Russell, BMS World Mission Secretary for Asia from England and Dr Bela Szilagyi from Hungarian Baptist Aid, accompanied them.

AIt was clear the medicines delivered earlier this year are already greatly depleted. The children=s hospital was almost devoid of medicines and the larger provincial hospital had only marginally more remaining in its storage facilities,@ reported Ms. Russell. AIt seems that the Baptist aid is at present the only source of medicines to these two hospitals.@ (BWA News)

Certifying Witchcraft for Kids

After receiving complaints from several parents, the Jacksonville Public Library has decided to cease issuing a "Certificate of Witchcraft@ to students who read the entire collection of the popular Harry Potter book series. The fictional Harry Potter attends the Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. Author J.K. Rowling=s original Harry Potter story, Harry Potter and The Sorcerer=s Stone, was published in 1998 and quickly became cultural phenomenon. The ensuing Harry Potter episodes -- Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, and Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire -- have continued the publishing phenomena.

While the Harry Potter series has reached unfathomable levels of popularity, many parents have expressed concern with some dark themes within the books. In Jacksonville, Mathew Staver, president of the Orlando-based Liberty Counsel, saw the inclusion of witchcraft certificates to students as a new arena in the continuing church-state debate.

The Jacksonville library=s discontinuance of their Certificate of Witchcraft followed receipt of a letter written by Mr. Staver, who represented the concerned parents. In the letter, he contended that issuing a Certificate of Witchcraft to students was an official endorsement of a particular religion, which is in violation of the First amendment=s establishment clause. Mr. Staver said that a government body issuing a Certificate of Witchcraft is no different than that same body issuing a certificate of baptism to students. This case illustrates the leniency many library and school administrators exhibit toward pagan and new age religions while students who embrace Christianity are frequently persecuted by school officials. (Liberty Journal)

Now with the Lord
 
The Lord called to glory a faithful servant on September 13, 2001. Arthur Kovacs was the son of Frank and Julia Kovacs who were members of our Hungarian Baptist Churches in Cleveland and in Palm Bay, Florida. Arthur loved the Lord and served Him at the Chesterland Baptist Church in Cumberland, Ohio and the Bethesda Baptist Church in Florida. He loved the Lord and served as a deacon and usher at his Chesterland Church. He is survived by his wife, La Donna and daughters Gall, Beth and Carolyn, eight grandchildren, two sisters, Esther and Ruth and one brother, Frank.
Lord, one of our number has gone
To be with our King
And so we rejoice for he
Knows pain and suffering no more
One of our number has run the noble race
And crossed the finish line into glory
And so we applaud.
For he fought the good fight.
One of our number no longer sees reflections
But now sees the Master face to face
And so we shout a mighty "Amen"
For our brother's fortune -
An yet - we grieve
For now, one of our number
Cannot be found in our midst.
But only - for now.

IRENE PETRE FEKETE

God called to glory a faithful servant on November 14, 2001. Irene Petre Fekete accepted the Lord in her early years and had served him throughout her 90 years of life. She was the eldest daughter of the late Reverend Adalbert Petre and became involved in the life of her church in West Pullman (Chicago), Gary, Indiana and Detroit, Michigan. She later moved to Florida in the early seventies and became active in the activities of our Bethesda Baptist Retirement Home and our church. In order to be closer to family both she and her husband Ignatz moved to Winter Haven, Florida and they both became very active in the life of their church there. Irene loved the Lord and testified to others of His love to all. She also was proud of her Hungarian heritage. Her husband predeceased her by almost a year and she longed to be with her Lord and to join her beloved husband. Irene is survived by two daughters, Renee and Sharon and three sons, Charles, Bud and Don who is a minister of the Gospel in Seattle, Washington.

Today, we remember her with tears in our eyes. We know from His word that some day He=ll wipe away all our tears and even though we have tears, we are made glad in knowing that Irene died in Christ and is already with our Heavenly Father in the place that He has prepared for all those who believe in Him and have lived a life of love and obedience to His will.

ALICE BIRO

The Lord called Alice Biro to her heavenly home on November 24, 2001. She was 98 years old and had served the Lord for most of her life. She was born in Budapest, Hungary and immigrated to the USA in the early nineteen hundreds. She settled in Buffalo, New York where she married and accepted the Lord as her Savior in the Hungarian Baptist Church then located in Buffalo. She and her husband, Nick, served in that church for many years before retiring to Palm Bay, Florida where they became members of our Bethesda Baptist Church. They were devoted Christians and enjoyed the fellowship of many friends here in Florida. During her last few years she and her husband moved to St. Petersburg, Florida in order to be near their daughter and son in law, Olga and Pinky. Periodically she would call and visit with us to let us know how she felt. She was always a lovely and gracious lady. She was loved and honored by all who knew her. She is no longer with us but she is in a far better place. A place to which she sought after all her life. She is now with the Lord and with her husband, Nick, and other people of God.

Today, we remember with tears our sister Alice. We know from Gods words that someday He will wipe away every tear from our eyes and even as rough as our tears are we are made glad in knowing that Alice died in Christ and is already with God in the place that He has prepared for her and all those who claim Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior.

Ernest J. Kish

MY SHEPHERD
 
The Lord is my Shepherd, no want shall I know,
In green pastures He makes me to lie;
By still waters freshens and strengthens my heart
And restores my tired soul when I cry;
In paths of His righteousness leads me each day
For His name's sake sweet comfort to give;
Though I walk through the valley
of death when life ends,
There's no evil to fear - I shall live!
He is with me each step with His rod and His staff
To protect me and guard me each day;
His own table is spread with His bounteous fare,
He anoints me with oil for my way;
My cup runneth over with joy uncompared,
His great goodness and mercy surround;
I shall dwell in His mansion that He has prepared,
Where sweet pleasures forever are found!
                                                                                            Willa Mae Whitney

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|SEPTEMBER 1997-AUGUST 1998 ISSUES| {EvHir-English1}
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