As they remember the Cold War, Slovakian Christians pray for Ukraine
Tony Coffey, minister for the Ranelagh Church of Christ in…
Members of Churches of Christ in Central Europe have become a multinational, multi-continent congregation in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The church in Prague, the capital of the Czech Republic, launched online services via Zoom as the lockdowns began. Church member Jaro Marcin, who works for Eastern European Mission, leads singing.
The church has invited men to serve in a preaching rotation, including Jordan Arnold, who lives 415 miles east of Prague in Košice, Slovakia, and serves a small congregation there.
“Two weeks ago we had about 70 participants from three different continents,” Arnold told The Christian Chronicle. “Kids from Hungary, Slovakia and Czechia have even been able to have something of an online youth group. Right now the program is in Czech and English, although we sing and are led in prayer in several different tongues: Slovak, Polish, German, Dutch, Hebrew, German and Hungarian.”
One participant is an Iranian baptized by Arnold a couple of years ago. In February the new believer returned to Iran, a nation hard hit by the virus, and is quarantined there.
“His extended family of 10 — those who are all sheltering in place in his villa — have all become believers in the Lord Jesus,” Arnold said, “and for the first time in any of their lives have gotten to ‘go to church’ because of an opportunity we were too blind to see before this COVID-19 pandemic opened our eyes.”
Slovakia, a nation of 5.4 million people, has implemented lockdown measures similar to those in the U.S. Recently, Foreign Policy magazine praised the country for having Europe’s lowest number of coronavirus deaths per capita.
The magazine credited the government’s decision to lock down the country quickly, plus quick compliance by its people and unambiguous messaging by Slovakian media.
The Czech Republic also seems to have avoided the worst of the pandemic thus far, Euronews reports, and is slowly easing its restrictions.
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