Ravencrest Now

Keeping everyone up to date on what God is doing in and around Ravencrest Chalet, in lovely Estes Park CO.

Tatabanya and beyond

Erik Snyder - Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Hi everyone! So today was similar to yesterday in so far that our Ravencrest team was separated into two groups and sent to two different schools, but there were also some small differences, which I will share.

For example, both groups did not go to the same schools as yesterday. The smaller group (my group) went to a “private-like” religious school where all the students wore uniforms, and the larger group was sent to a bigger public high school. On my end- in the private school- students were very receptive with our team and we were very able to connect to the students.  During one of the long breaks one of the teachers took our smaller group to see the ruins of an old Hungarian Castle next to this beautiful lake and it was absolutely amazing!

When both groups returned from our missionary work at the various schools we went to, a few of us went up hiking to see Tatabanya’s National Falcon statue and we could see all of Tatabanya and beyond from the view up there- it was fantastic (but it also made me queasy since I am afraid of heights).

Lastly, in the evening we all had English Club again. More people came tonight and we could all really see God working. Josh Miller shared his testimony and we could see that the teens and adults who came to attend the English Club truly were enjoying themselves and listening to what we had to say about our faith (how God will use these seeds I do not know but we know that they will not yield nothing).
So all in all it was a really good day. We will be sad to say goodbye to Hungary but we were happy to be here and we were blessed by those Matt and his family, who supported us while we were here.

- Debbie Gallou

In Tatabanya

Erik Snyder - Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Today has a great day of mission. We had the privilege of going into schools to get to know the students and take interest in their lives while giving experience in conversational English. It was fun getting to know them and spending time with them! The students have been great! They have good English comprehension and are very open and friendly. We hope to continue building relationship with them and pointing them to Christ even after we leave.

We invited the students to the English club tonight to talk more and have a bit of fun while pointing them to Christ. Not as many showed up as we would have liked, but we are hoping for more tomorrow. The club went well and we had fun and gave testimony and praise for the Lord. We connected well with them and are looking forward to seeing them again tomorrow. We will be praying for God to prepare their hearts for what He wants them to hear and the relationship he desires to have with them.

There was one man who accepted Christ tonight! Praise the Lord! He prayed with us and signed a salvation poem card! He is also interested in reading the book of John and attending the local church. We are so joyful to have another brother in Christ! Many of us shared what God has done in our lives with them and the hope we have in Him. He said that he thought God wanted him to be there tonight and indeed He did. We will continue to pray for him and walk with him through life and hopefully get him into the local church and discipleship. We are very excited to get to know our new brother tomorrow and God giving us more of our family. We will continue to put our hope in Christ doing His Will for His glory. Please pray for God’s victory here in Tatabanya.

- Keith Kaufmann

Greetings from Hungary

Erik Snyder - Monday, March 16, 2015

Greetings from Hungary! Just thought I’d pop in to inform everyone what has been going on in the past 24 hours. Today, Sunday the 15th we joined a church that Matthew Edwards preaches and attends with his family. The church was small in size but warm and welcoming. Our Ravencrest worship team joined alongside the Hungarian worship team and led us in songs sung in both Hungarian and English. It was by far one of the most beautiful things I’ve heard. To hear people worshiping in another language is so powerful to me.  After worship Laura shared her powerful testimony and Frank gave a sermon on what it looks like to be in discipleship. During the sermon a few of our students went and worked with the little kids and got to be a light to them, its truly encouraging to see people loving on others that they barley know, just as Christ did.

After church we went to be tourists for a day in Budapest. We first walked around the city along with all the locals out celebrating the national holiday. Dancing, singing, food, and shops we got a good taste of what it looks like to have a good time around here. There are so many old beautiful churches and buildings here in this city its hard to not stop every five seconds to take a picture. We then walked across the Danube River and explored some delicious ice cream and coffee shops, went inside a HUGE Catholic Church and observed what a Mass service looks and sounds like. Then by walking what felt like a million more miles we wound up eating Mexican food and enjoying some good fellowship with each other. When finished we wondered around town more and continued to be tourists taking goofy pictures and enjoy the true beauty this country has to offer.

When back at our dorms we had a night of debrief, preparation for teaching tomorrow, and a time of encouraging each other giving observations and advice. Overall today was fun, eventful, encouraging, and a nice time of relaxing before we hop into the crazy and challenging time of teaching and being out in the mission field. Our team would really appreciate prayers for prepared hearts to teach and learn while out in the schools, being willing to get out of our comfort zones, and with prayer for health and team unity. Praise to God for a team full of different personalities and strengths. He knows how to put a team together so praise Him for that. Thanks for reading, we will be back with another post tomorrow!

- Megan Ballin

A light in the dark

Erik Snyder - Sunday, March 15, 2015

Today we traveled from Schloss Klaus to Vienna, Austria to see another beautiful European city – actually known to be one of the most beautiful cities in the world! – seeing famous sights such as St. Stephen’s Church (Stephansdom) and the Opera House (Staatsoper). After spending the afternoon in a world-famous city known for attracting tourists from all over the world, we boarded a train to Tatabanya, Hungary, a little town that gets next to no visitors and native English speakers are nearly nonexistent. A Soviet-style city, we noticed that it was quite industrial as our train pulled in, and the weather was actually fairly grey and gloomy as well. We found our hosts, Matthew and Melinda Edwards, though, to be very bright, warm, and welcoming, obviously serving as a light to their community as they serve at Calvary Chapel, which they helped about ten years ago and that Matthew is now the pastor of. We ate wonderful Hungarian ghoulash with an extremely large loaf of bread, followed by lemon, cherry, and chocolate desserts before getting an overview of the rest of our time here. During our time here, we will be helping serve at Calvary Chapel, teaching English in local high schools, and running an English camp in the evenings. Please keep us in your prayers as we spend the next few days in Hungary, being a light to such a dark community void of many churches.

- Emma Wheeler

Traveling in Europe

Erik Snyder - Friday, March 13, 2015

After arriving at Schloss Klaus and carrying our bags up about 50 flights of stairs, we were able to have a wonderful nights sleep in this beautiful castle. In the morning, we had a great breakfast of bread, cheese and fruit and then walked to the train station to go to the town of Schladming to visit Tauernhof, another Austrian Torchbearers school. After getting on the train we realized we were going in the opposite direction and quickly changed trains. Once we had toured Tauernhof, we had lunch at Taxi Maxi and ate delicious doner kabobs. We then had about an hour to look around the town before heading back to Schloss Klaus. As we were making our way back, we accidently missed the train we were supposed to take the rest of the way. For a while it looked as though we would spend the night on train station benches, but our very capable leader, Frank, called for a taxi so we could make our way safely to Klaus. It was a pretty great day.

- Ellie Entz

#RCEurope15

Erik Snyder - Thursday, March 12, 2015

The Europe team arrived safely in Austria yesterday afternoon and traveled by train to Schloss Klaus, the German-speaking Torchbearer center here. We enjoyed a tour of the castle where the school is located and were able to eat dinner with the students.

Praise for safe travels and a healthy team, beautiful landscape and a good night’s rest last evening.

Pray for continued travels and opportunities to serve and share our faith, as well as for relationships with those we meet along the way.

Thank you to all our supporters and those who are praying for us as we travel and serve!

-Laura Gamble

You can follow the European mission team on Instagram by searching #rceurope15, as well as the Portland mission team by searching #rcportland15

 

Spring News Letter

Erik Snyder - Tuesday, June 24, 2014

The newest Ravencrest news letter for spring 2014 has just been sent out. If you're not yet on our mailing list, haven't received it or just want to be able to view and share online what's going on here at Ravencrest, we've made it available for you as a PDF.

 

 

 

 

Summary of PNW Mission Trip - Jonas

Erik Snyder - Friday, March 28, 2014

Things I learned on our mission trip in Portland:
Something that is sadly often the case in the church is that on the outside we are very kind and nice to people, but on the inside we really don’t care about people we don’t know. This was especially true for me before the mission trip to the Pacific North West, and is something I have to be watchful for now even as I’m back at Ravencrest Chalet and as I prepare to go back home to Germany.  Getting to work with the homeless in Portland, Oregon one of the opportunities we had was to walk through the city at night and hand out sandwiches, socks and coffee to those who were sleeping outside. We also were able to talk with them and got to pray for a few of them. One guy that really made an impact on me was Randy, and he appeared at least 60 years old; he did not want us to pray for him. He said: “I have cried out to God a few days ago, but He does not do anything.” This was the first time on the trip where God really broke my heart, and I realized that God sends us as His disciples to show His compassion and His love to the world around us!


On our last day we made invitations and invited some of the homeless from the area to have a fancy dinner with us so we could get to know them and their stories. I found this very challenging, as the guy at my table was not really able to communicate very clearly. He was hearing voices and thought that this Dinner was a trap. Despite this difficulty it was still a great opportunity to step out of my own way and to honor God with how I treat someone God loves so deeply! All in all it was a very challenging time, but it was also a very shaping experience that I will take with me as I prepare to go home!

- Jonas

Summary of PNW Mission Trip - Max

Erik Snyder - Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Back home at Ravencrest Chalet, I’ve had the chance to reflect on the mission trip to the Pacific North West. While we were in Portland, Oregon we were made homeless for a day. When we were sent on the streets, knowing that we will have to “fight” our way through the day, we were already set back. During the day we went to soup kitchens and spent time with the homeless, even got to know some of them. Often when we think of the homeless we lump them all together and think of them as a single group of people ‘the homeless’ it was amazing to hear their stories and see them as individuals. Most of them were rather clever, some were Christians some not, some hostile some really friendly even liking our project. It is amazing how many opportunities there are for a homeless person to eat food. Being in Portland, a homeless person can eat up to 12 times a day, without paying a single dime. Portland offers a great surplus of physical worldly food, but has a great lack of true sustaining spiritual food.


The following night we had the opportunity to be a part of a project called Night Strike, an event in which we were serving under a bridge in Portland, giving out food, clothing, cutting hair and providing all kinds of services for the homeless community. I myself was giving out clothes with some others of my group which was an interesting experience as well. Even though we couldn't share the gospel with them, we were able to love them and perhaps plant some seeds into their hearts.

- Max

Summary of Ravencrest in Europe

Erik Snyder - Monday, March 24, 2014

The missions’ trip to Europe was fun and exciting, but also difficult and eye-opening. We spent the majority of our time in Hungary and Romania doing different kinds of work. In Hungary we had the opportunity to interact with several different high school groups. At night our Ravencrest team hosted an English Club for the students to come and have a fun evening while learning about God. The ministry was fruitful and exciting as we saw God working in people's lives. On the other hand, we had to give of ourselves unreservedly as we shared how God has worked in our lives and how He wants to work in the lives of them too. Though no one that I knew of came to Christ, there were a few teens that opened up to His calling. One verse I'm reminded of is 1 Corinthians 15:58, "Therefore, my beloved brethren, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that you labor is not in vain in the Lord."
Our work in Romania involved working around the Purtătorii de Făclie Torchbearers Center and helping out with poor city kids and gypsy children. The city kids were a joy to work with, but their lives were somewhat tragic--not because of their poverty--but because they had not been showed love by many people in their lives. It was a hard experience for us to only be able to help these kids out for a few short hours in their lives. Leaving was difficult because they continued clinging to us and would not let go. Working with the gypsy children was a similar experience, except that they were already far deeper into poverty and somewhat younger. The chance we had to serve all these people had an effect on the team. It was a reminder that our lives can and should be given up for the work of God's kingdom, and it showed the global need for God's saving grace.


- Amy Dossett

Images by William LaHatt


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