2016 National Day of Prayer

May 1, 2016 by  
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2016 National Day of Prayer

National Identity and Collective Consciousness of the Bulgarian Community

April 10, 2013 by  
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In understanding the history of the advancements in psychotherapy in Bulgaria and the foundations of the country as a whole, we gain a glimpse into the national identity and collective consciousness of a community; one which was formed by a strong people; a people that strive for religious freedom and the quest for knowledge; one that overcame oppression, trial and, hardship.

For many Bulgarians, communism was not simply a set of ideological directives, but it permeated nearly all spheres of social life. Communism and the lasting effects on its population is not one that is comfortable to recollect. It is neither something that is easy to understand and we may never fully comprehend the post communist mentality. And perhaps we should question those who make such claim.

However, if left ignored, we ignore an undeniable part of history and identity. The danger in not recollecting is that we may in doing so, ignore the possibility for change. Recognition is the first step toward change and empathy. It is only via the shoes of empathy that we can walk in the paths of genuinely comprehending the post communistic mentality and another culture.

Excepts taken from “LOOKING OVER the WALL”
A Psychological Exploration of Communist and Post Communist Bulgaria
Copyright © April 12, 2012 by Kathryn N. Donev
© 2012, Spasen Publishers, a division of www.cupandcross.com

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National Training for Ministers in Rouse

September 10, 2010 by  
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dsci0701

National Youth Camp in Bulgaria

August 10, 2009 by  
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petrohanIn years past, we have visited and ministered to a dozen different youth camps in Bulgaria. Each of them has been unique and special, but it has been a while since we have ministered at a youth camp where people have been so hungry to receive from God.

We were asked to visit the National Youth Camp at Petrohan and to lecture on our new translation of the Bulgarian New Testament. Pastor Vasil Petrov and his team from the Gabrovo Church of God accompanied us for the evening services. People from the churches in Sofia, Bankia, Aheloy, Bourgas, Varshetz, Gabrovo, Nova and Stara Zagora, Kazanlak, Sliven, Yambol and many other places joined with tents and campers for the occasion. Visiting missionaries from the Untied States and Switzerland were also present.

As our publisher provided us with several hundred copies of the translation, we were able to give each of the attendees a copy to read and to study. This helped us tremendously in the presentation of somewhat difficult material from the translator’s notes. The lectures were followed by the evening services with an inspiring message from pastor Vasil Petrov. Each night, prayer and worship at the alter continued well after midnight. We prayed for the healing of dozens of people. Many more were delivered instantly from various infirmities, both in soul and in body. Eight young people received the baptism with the Holy Spirit the very first night and many more were baptized in the following evenings. You could see parents and children praying for each other around the clock. One girl saw a vision of the “Heart of God” being exalted in our midst. As we continued with our next ministry appointment in the city of Varshetz, some stayed behind to spend one more day in the presence of the Lord on the top of the mountain. We will reconvene with them this week at the next youth camp organized by the Assemblies of God on the Karandila Mountain near Sliven.

Published in the Bulgarian National Geographic

August 5, 2009 by  
Filed under Featured, News

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The March issue of the Bulgarian National Geographic featured an article about the Bulgarian Bogomils – a medieval Bulgarian sect that split from the Orthodox Church forming its own religious community with peculiar customs. The author of the article, the renowned Bulgarian journalist Lubormir Kiumurdjiev, interviewed a number of Bulgarian theologians in an effort to investigate the Christian roots of the Bogomil’s theology. The view of the Bulgarian protestant community was represented in the article by Dr. Dony K. Donev, who elaborates on two main points in the faith of the Bogomils namely, their purposeful simplification of liturgy, as a sign of proto-reformation theology within the context of the Eastern Orthodox Church and their continuous efforts toward a new literal Bible translation in the spoken Bulgarian vernacular of their times.

The National Geographic’s publication comes as a high recognition of long years of hard labor in the publication of three biweekly series. Two of them are still ongoing with the Bulgarian Evangelical Newspaper as one tells the story of Bulgarian Protestantism, and the other focuses on chronological paleographical examination of Biblical manuscripts, in comparison of versions and revisions of the Bulgarian Bible. The third one is published in the Pentecostal Evangel and is almost finished with the examination of early Bulgarian Pentecostal history, while many of its findings will be presented at the 2010 SPS meeting.

National Leadership Seminar for the Bulgarian Church of God Continues

October 20, 2008 by  
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Levels 3-5 of the Leadership Seminar were presented on Saturday afternoon in the Gabrovo Church of God.  The following topics were covered: 21 Laws of Leadership from a Biblical Perspective, 52 Leadership Principles of Jesus and 17 Laws of Teamwork for Churches. Plans have been made for the seminar to be held in Bourgas, Sofia, Samokov and Russe.

On Sunday we delivered a message entitled 10 Signs of the Last Days. This is a sermon accompanied by a powerful media presentation that informs of recent developments in Bible Prophecy and urges believers to prepare and stay ready for the final hour of Biblical eschatology.

After the morning service, we traveled south to meet with pastors in Kazanlak and Stara Zagora and reached the city of Dimitrovgrad located South of the Balkan Range. We were invited to speak to the hundreds of young people from Bulgaria, Ukrain, Russia and Molodva who had gathered there for a youth rally. As planned and expected we announced the release of the newest of our ministry websites – a GodTube like web community called Bibliata.TV.

Bibliata.com National Tour

October 25, 2005 by  
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bibliatacom.jpgBibliata.com is one of our ministry websites dedicated to the study of the Bible in the Bulgarian vernacular. In the past years, it has become a web place where approximately 1,000 people come daily to discuss the text of the Bible as well as the critical, historical and social issues connected to it.

In the summer of 2005, our team envisioned, organized and executed a national tour of the website. This included traveling to over 25 churches, presenting study modules, holding round table discussions, revival and youth services, and of course numerous meetings with people who have worked with us in this great ministry project. The tour was featured by several Christian TV and radio programs and was met with great anticipation by both Christian and secular audiences. The tour accomplished several strategic purposes:

1. Meeting in person with the website’s visitors
2. Reuniting with team members to chart next year’s strategy
3. Receiving authentic feedback to help make the website a better Christian community
4. Putting real faces with the virtual reality of the website
5. Popularizing the idea of Christian ministry via the internet

Bulgaria’s National Holiday: The Liberation of Bulgaria (1877-1878)

March 1, 2004 by  
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After being under Turkish yoke for over 500 years, Bulgaria was liberated in 1878. For the first time, March 3rd was celebrated in 1880 as the Day of the Ascension of Emperor Alexander II. Since 1888 it has been commemorated as the Day of Bulgaria’s Liberation from Ottoman rule.

During the 500 years of the Ottoman occupation, armed uprisings occurred recurrently in Bulgarian lands. Most of them were badly organized and brutally suppressed by superior Ottoman forces. It is from here that the great significance of the Bulgarian national liberation movement of the ’70s and its peak – the April Uprising – derives. The Bulgarian nation daringly appeared on the European political scene with the motto “Freedom or a heroic death,” challenging the rest of the world and putting to the test all adherents. The April Uprising of 1876 was quickly surprised by the Ottoman regular army through the killing of thousands of Bulgarian men, women and children and burning villages and towns to the ground. In this situation the governments of the Great Powers were in no position to overtly maintain the status quo as regards the Ottoman Empire. This created a congenial political situation and made it possible a more decisive intervention on the part of Russia. The Turkish atrocities that accompanied the April uprising illustrated to the whole world the true face of the Ottoman state and its barbarity. World public opinion raised its voice in defense of the Bulgarian people. British, American, Italian, French, German and Russian journalists and consuls made known to their governments and their peoples the truth about these monstrous crimes.

After preliminary talks with the European Great Powers on the possible outcome of hostilities, Russia declared war on Turkey on April 12, 1877. On the Balkans the Russian army had to overcome the Danube – a major water barrier, before coming anywhere near the Turkish troops. The Russians crossed the Danube in June, 1877. The war plan was based on the miscalculated presumption that Turkey was a colossus on clay stilts which should collapse at the first blow and envisaged the engagement of only a small Russian contingent 15,000-strong. Linder General Gurko’s command it was to rush through a narrow corridor to Constantinople and to prompt the terms of peace to the Turkish government. According to this same plan the 300,000-strong Ottoman troops in Bulgaria had to be counteracted by the Russian officers and soldiers about 250,000-strong in attacks outflanking the narrow passage.
The Bulgarian people met the news of the Russo-Turkish war with great enthusiasm and it too, rose against its centuries-long oppressor. A Bulgarian military detachment called ‘Bulgarian volunteers’, consisting of 12 battalions 12,500-strong, joined the Russian army. Hundreds of concomitant guerrilla detachments having from several dozens to several hundreds of soldiers were organized, too. These were particularly efficient in dealing with the communications and the small military groups of the enemy. Thousands of other Bulgarians directly joined the Russian army to help as reconnaissance officers, engineers of fortification facilities, medical orderlies, suppliers of fodder and food.

About the middle of July, the Russian leading detachment with Bulgarian volunteer forces reached the town of Stara Zagora in Southern Bulgarian, almost half-way through to Constantinople. The troops meant to protect the western flank of the Russian army in Bulgaria suffered a defeat in two assaults against the strategic fortress of Pleven, located only forty five miles from the Danube. At that time, the Turkish military forces concentrated on the eastern flanks of the corridor occupied by the Russians, also grew unimpeded. Soon their number was three times larger than the Russian troops withholding them. Turkish crack regiments four times as big as the Russian advance detachment were coming on from its opposite direction. Having no alternative but to succumb to the superior force, the Russians and the Bulgarians withdrew to position along the Balkan Mountain ridge in the region of the Shipka pass. Aware of its blunder, the Russian command immediately resorted to the translocation of major military formations from Russia to Bulgaria. Given traveling speed in those days the troops were expected to arrive at the front line not before the beginning of September. Everyone was clear that the war would be decided by the battle outcome at Shipka. If the Turkish army from southern Bulgaria succeeded in crossing over the Balkan Range and then joining one of the Turkish armies in northern Bulgaria, the Turkish command could be sure to obtain petrifying numerical superiority over the siege-imperiled Russians who should then leave Bulgaria. As fate has strangely willed it, the liberation of Bulgaria was entirely dependent upon the efficiency of the several thousand Bulgarian volunteers in keeping their positions on Shipka. Due to misjudgment of the direction of the Turkish main efforts, the command of the forces on Shipka had sent Russian operational reserve contingents to help in the defense of Hainboaz, another throat in the mountain. The Bulgarian volunteer detachment and only one Russian regiment remained on Shipka.

During the hot days of August 1877 epic battles took place on that mountain peak of Shipka, at the geographical intersection point of the Bulgarian lands. There the Bulgarians proved that they thoroughly deserved their freedom. Supported by few Russians, the Bulgarian volunteer detachment drove off dozens of frontal and flanking attacks by the stronger enemy with its manifold superior numbers of men and equipment, expected to easily vanquish volunteers, fighting with old rifle-trophies from the Franco-Prussian War. When the arms and ammunitions finished, the volunteers resorted to blank weapons to repulse the attacks. In fierce man-to-man fighting they showered boulders and other mass of rock, even their dead comrades’ bodies. Pertinacious and murderous was the Bulgarians’ effort that crushed the Turkish army and caused it to lose nearly half of its strength. The Bulgarian volunteers withstood their positions and thus, coped with a situation that spelled more and even greater danger. A quick change of scene and reversal of the war occurred after the arrival of fresh Russian reinforcements. They took Pleven and crossed the Balkan Mountain at the end of 1877. Following victorious battles at Sofia, Plovdiv and Sheinovo, the Ottoman military machinery was shattered, dilapidated and ruined. A preliminary peace treaty was signed in the small town of San Stefano near Constantinople on March 3, 1878. It made provision for an autonomous Bulgarian state extending to almost all Bulgarian lands in the geographical areas of Macedonia, Thrace and Moesia. The treaty of San Stefano obtained justice for the Bulgarian people. Its terms of peace included the restoration of Bulgaria’s state independence and the Bulgarians’ reunification within the boundaries of one state. It, provided the solution to the paramount historic task which had confronted the Bulgarian people over the last five centuries.
to the Turkish government. According to this same plan the 300,000-strong Ottoman troops in Bulgaria had to be counteracted by the Russian officers and soldiers about 250,000-strong in attacks outflanking the narrow passage.
The Bulgarian people met the news of the Russo-Turkish war with great enthusiasm and it too, rose against its centuries-long oppressor. A Bulgarian military detachment called ‘Bulgarian volunteers’, consisting of 12 battalions 12,500-strong, joined the Russian army. Hundreds of concomitant guerrilla detachments having from several dozens to several hundreds of soldiers were organized, too. These were particularly efficient in dealing with the communications and the small military groups of the enemy. Thousands of other Bulgarians directly joined the Russian army to help as reconnaissance officers, engineers of fortification facilities, medical orderlies, suppliers of fodder and food.

About the middle of July, the Russian leading detachment with Bulgarian volunteer forces reached the town of Stara Zagora in Southern Bulgarian, almost half-way through to Constantinople. The troops meant to protect the western flank of the Russian army in Bulgaria suffered a defeat in two assaults against the strategic fortress of Pleven, located only forty five miles from the Danube. At that time, the Turkish military forces concentrated on the eastern flanks of the corridor occupied by the Russians, also grew unimpeded. Soon their number was three times larger than the Russian troops withholding them. Turkish crack regiments four times as big as the Russian advance detachment were coming on from its opposite direction. Having no alternative but to succumb to the superior force, the Russians and the Bulgarians withdrew to position along the Balkan Mountain ridge in the region of the Shipka pass. Aware of its blunder, the Russian command immediately resorted to the translocation of major military formations from Russia to Bulgaria. Given traveling speed in those days the troops were expected to arrive at the front line not before the beginning of September. Everyone was clear that the war would be decided by the battle outcome at Shipka. If the Turkish army from southern Bulgaria succeeded in crossing over the Balkan Range and then joining one of the Turkish armies in northern Bulgaria, the Turkish command could be sure to obtain petrifying numerical superiority over the siege-imperiled Russians who should then leave Bulgaria. As fate has strangely willed it, the liberation of Bulgaria was entirely dependent upon the efficiency of the several thousand Bulgarian volunteers in keeping their positions on Shipka. Due to misjudgment of the direction of the Turkish main efforts, the command of the forces on Shipka had sent Russian operational reserve contingents to help in the defense of Hainboaz, another throat in the mountain. The Bulgarian volunteer detachment and only one Russian regiment remained on Shipka.

During the hot days of August 1877 epic battles took place on that mountain peak of Shipka, at the geographical intersection point of the Bulgarian lands. There the Bulgarians proved that they thoroughly deserved their freedom. Supported by few Russians, the Bulgarian volunteer detachment drove off dozens of frontal and flanking attacks by the stronger enemy with its manifold superior numbers of men and equipment, expected to easily vanquish volunteers, fighting with old rifle-trophies from the Franco-Prussian War. When the arms and ammunitions finished, the volunteers resorted to blank weapons to repulse the attacks. In fierce man-to-man fighting they showered boulders and other mass of rock, even their dead comrades’ bodies. Pertinacious and murderous was the Bulgarians’ effort that crushed the Turkish army and caused it to lose nearly half of its strength. The Bulgarian volunteers withstood their positions and thus, coped with a situation that spelled more and even greater danger. A quick change of scene and reversal of the war occurred after the arrival of fresh Russian reinforcements. They took Pleven and crossed the Balkan Mountain at the end of 1877. Following victorious battles at Sofia, Plovdiv and Sheinovo, the Ottoman military machinery was shattered, dilapidated and ruined. A preliminary peace treaty was signed in the small town of San Stefano near Constantinople on March 3, 1878. It made provision for an autonomous Bulgarian state extending to almost all Bulgarian lands in the geographical areas of Macedonia, Thrace and Moesia. The treaty of San Stefano obtained justice for the Bulgarian people. Its terms of peace included the restoration of Bulgaria’s state independence and the Bulgarians’ reunification within the boundaries of one state. It, provided the solution to the paramount historic task which had confronted the Bulgarian people over the last five centuries.