European Baptist Women's Union


Executive Meets in Spain
23-29 March, 2004

Report written by
Janny Kingma
EBWU Secretary


March 23-29 the executive committee met in El Escorial near Madrid, Spain. Unfortunately Olga couldn't be present.  

The Committee members
from left to right:
Erzsebet Vekas
Janny Kingma
Aniko Ujvari
Ewa Gutkowska
Margun Warem
Livija Lame

Olga Mocan is missing

The six of us were hosted in a convent. Can you imagine, six Baptist women staying in a nunnery. But we really felt welcome and were surrounded with warm hospitality. And beside the mother-superior of the convent also Hilda Dorado De Simarro was present, together with her husband to meet all our needs.
And in this peaceful surrounding we could talk about all the items on our agenda, share personal news, show pictures, sing and pray.

Our president Ewa reported on her visits to Armenia, Moldova, Russia and the USA, where she had been present at several conferences, gave lectures and met many people. In the meantime she has received more invitations from other countries which she will try to visit.
The other officers gave reports too, vice-president, secretary and treasurer. Elisabeth showed us how much money from the Day of Prayer offerings of 2003 had been received till then, how much from the membership fee and gifts. Half of this DOPmoney is to be send to the Women's Department where it will be used in our world wide women's work. We are grateful for all the money raised for this purpose.

We decided which projects to sponsor in Europe with the other part of that money. We try to do this in good stewardship and to use this money wisely. We chose to support the following projects:

  • Part of a scholarship for two students at IBTS at Prague and one at the Christian University of Kiev,

  • A chaplain project to Russian soldiers in Dagestan by our brothers and sisters in Belarus and the support of pastor's families in their country,

  • A Portuguese missionary project in Mozambique,

  • Transportation to a women's conference in Lebanon.

In Latvia we'd like to sponsor families' camps, a pastor's family and a childcare project of the church, and in Romania a camp for single women with children. Of course we still continue with our Chernobyl project.
Every year the Day of Prayer programme is the responsibility of one of the continental unions. Next year it'll be Europe's turn, so we had to start working on ideas for the programme during this meeting.

Aniko told us about her experiences being the editor of News and Views for the first time and the ideas she has to continue with this job. Do you know we are very up to date and actually have a webmaster.
The committee members, except the president and the secretary, are responsible for several areas in Europe. They try to keep a closer contact with these countries. It is a big challenge how to realise this and we have to admit it isn't always an easy task.

Beside all those reports on the work that has been done, we have to make plans for the future. I told you already about the DOP programme for next year. The theme will be 'Seeing with New Eyes', which will also be the theme for the BWA Leadership Conference in Birmingham next year.
We also hope to realise a mini conference in the Middle East. This still requires a lot of work and a lot of prayer!
Let me assure you that we have been praying for you all and we certainly hope you will join us in prayer for all the work that is done in our continent.


Meeting with the Spanish sisters

When we received the invitation of the Women's Union of Spain to have our meeting in their country and to take part in one of their conferences, we couldn't know that we would come to them in such a tragic time like after the event of March 11. But as we expressed at their Leadership Conference, held in Madrid, where we met several of our Spanish sisters, it is easy to be together in happy times, like in Rabac, Croatia last year, but it is good and important to be together in sad times, because we are one body in Christ. And when one part suffers, the others suffer too.

When we were shown something of Madrid, we also saw the terminal where the victims of the train bombs were commemorated with candles, flowers, pictures and texts. It made a great impression on us which we'll never forget. In their Conference we were able to share about the work of EBWU and have closer contact with the Spanish executive. These contacts are very important to us and we are happy that we were able to be in Spain. We are grateful to Rosamary Lopez De Simarro, the president of the Spanish Women's Union for their invitation, for making all the arrangements for a wonderful stay in their country and for their loving care and their faithful support of the work of EBWU.

Janny Kingma


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