THANKFUL in 2020

November 25, 2020 by  
Filed under Events, Featured, News

10 Reasons to Be Thankful in the Midst of COVID-19 Pandemic

  1. Families spend more time together at home and in nature
  2. Gas prices have decreased
  3. Eating around dinner table has replaced going out to restaurants
  4. Prayer and return to the Faith has increased
  5. Homeschooling has become popular
  6. Open-air church meetings are coming back
  7. Communities are rallying together to help one another with less individualism
  8. Politicians are working more cohesively
  9. We are resourceful and not wasteful appreciating small things and basic necessities
  10. We are going back to the basics of a slower more grounded lifestyle

BLACK FRIDAY BOOK SALE

November 20, 2020 by  
Filed under Books, Events, Featured, News

All books by Cup&Cross on SALE

Final clearance sale for the year with new titles coming up in early 2021

CLICK the picture below to view all titles on Amazon.com

American Pumpkin Ministry in Bulgaria

November 15, 2020 by  
Filed under Featured, Missions, News

When Dony’s mom was last here in the US giving a report of Cup & Cross’s work in Bulgaria, we were able to send back with her some vegetable seeds for the churches under her care. Among them were American pumpkins.

Pumpkins are believed to have originated in Central America over 7,500 years ago and they were among the first crops grown for human consumption in North America. Pumpkins or ‘pumpions’ as they were once called, were brought to Europe around the 16th century and introduced by the French to Tudor England where they were quickly incorporated. Ever since that time, pumpkins have been grown in Bulgaria as well, where they are part of a wide variety of delicious pastries.

When Dony’s mother returned home to Bulgaria and went to check in with her churches she overseas in the Yambol Region, she was able to share with some of ladies these American pumpkin seeds. One lady who lives in a village owns several acres of farm land and was able to plant these seeds. Now that the Fall season is upon us, they have begun harvesting these pumpkins they are planning to share with people from the churches and the nearby villages where many families will enjoy them during this Holiday Season.

Polk Homeschool Network Hosts Filed Day at the River Maze

November 10, 2020 by  
Filed under Events, Featured, News, Publication

30 Years of Miracles: 2009

November 5, 2020 by  
Filed under Featured, Missions, News

Mission BULGARIA 2009: Services in the Yambol Region

At the recent regional ministry conference, where the Yambol, Sliven, Bourgas and Nova Zagora regions were represented, many reported exciting ministry results in various locations. Revivals broke in the villages of Kamenetz and Malomir, spontaneous prayer meetings arise often, while healings and various miracles are reported almost weekly. A water baptismal service for new believers is scheduled for the beginning in August at the Thundja River. In the midst of severe poverty and political unrest, the move of God has become a life answer for many. It is personally challenging when you see the weather and earth beaten hands of the man worshiping beside you and you witness the widow giving her last mite. Then when service is over you notice how the frail elderly ladies cover their heads with a white cloth so that the sun does not beat on their heads during their walk home. So to say that we spent our day ministering to those of the village churches is an understatement because it is those of the village churches whom ministered to us.  Our last service ended in the afternoon and it was truly a special day.

National Youth Camp in Bulgaria (August 10, 2009)

In 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 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 at the Karandila Mountain near the town of Sliven.

Renewing of the Evening Services in Yambol (September 1, 2009)

We report that with the assistance of our team and the help of many partners in ministry, the renewal of Sunday evening services at the Yambol Pentecostal Church has been successful. In the course of this work, we were able to witness a dramatic outpouring of the Holy Spirit each Sunday service from 6 to 10 PM as some hundred people gather for worship. We are still receiving reports of various healings and miracles that occurred each night, among which are:

  1. A lady of the worship team, who has played the violin in church all her life, scheduled for surgery that same week due to a bone-ligament condition was instantly healed during the prayer.
  2. Deliverance of multiple cases of headache, migraines and sinus were reported at the end of the alter service.
  3. As the church continued in several hours of prayer, around 9 PM a lady threw herself on the floor with screams and convulsions and was delivered from a demon.
  4. An elderly gentleman with a chronic condition in his vestibular apparatus due to a foot injury reported instant improvement and ran joyfully through the church.
  5. Several people reported improvement in their eyesight and hearing.
  6. Instant disappearing of pain and discomfort in bones, muscles, ligaments and chronicle conditions in back, hip and neck areas were reported during the prayer.
  7. A lady with a broken arm, who was watching the service live on the internet, later reported that her pain disappeared during the course of the service.
  8. Several people, who were brought to service from the local Dialysis Treatment Center, also reported instant relief. We are now waiting for doctoral reports as confirmation for the healings.

He Remains the Same (November 20, 2009)

This past Sunday we were able to return to the Awakening Church of God in Stara Zagora. After the Word, all in service gathered at the alter. Although the church was full, there were several families absent due to the flu epidemic which has spread across the country with 8 dead already accounted for. But during this time when the government is closing down schools and people are wearing masks for health reasons, the Lord’s healing power remains the same and we are reminded of His promise that He will protect His people and “it shall be well with them”. Among this, we were encouraged powerfully by the presence of the Holy Spirit in our meetings. After all the changes and transformations the Stara Zagora church has gone through during years past, it was encouraging that God remains the same. The people who are faithful to Him can trust in His ever-sameness with their lives and future, for His promises to us change not. Our team is planning to return to Stara Zagora before the end of the month for the next leg of our National Mega Youth Rally in Bulgaria

This book should have been published seven years ago in 2013. Its original subtitle was going to read “7 Years in Bulgaria.” Instead, it took seven years to finish it with all documents, research archives and new cases. Now, it is finally here and it finally reads like a story – not just choppy interviews, deposition documented testimonies or court records, but a story of struggle, strength and solitude. A story of life and a story of us.

1995-96 The establishing of the first Bulgarian Church of God in Chicago and its first split

2000-01 The contracted building of the ministry center for the Central Church of God in Sofia

2002-03 The church split in Southaven and what followed next

2005-06 The post-communist split of the Bulgarian Church of God and consecutive sub-denominations

2010-13 The social media network that cost us millions (of souls)

2016 The vote that forced to kill a church

2019-20 The sale of the ministry center for the Central Church of God in Bulgaria

READ: CONFESSIONS of a Pentecostal Preacher

CONFESSIONS of a Pentecostal Preacher

To Mark Alan
We know not why good people have to die,
but we do know we must tell their story…

Chapter I: Beyond the Church and into God

Be without fear in the face of your enemies.
Be brave and upright that God may love thee.
Speak the truth always, even if it leads to your death.
Safeguard the helpless and do no wrong.
That is your oath.
~Kingdom
of Heaven (2005)

 

Separation of church from politics of false religiosity

The phone rang heavy and long. It was 4 AM in Bulgaria, but I was already up. A friend on the other end of the line was calling from South Carolina with a warning of some bad situation. The following morning, I was going to be contacted by the Director questioning why we were ministering in churches outside of our denomination.

The truth was we had ministered in some 300 local churches across the Balkan country of Bulgaria crossing all denominational boundaries and gathering youth from just about every confession. God had used us not only to reach and minister and to lead, but to step into an untouched spiritual realm, to undertake an unfamiliar ministry paradigm and to approach a brand new dimension of reality where He was to be the center of it all. And we had obeyed without questions. Now it was time to pay the price!

* * *

Our denomination, the one to which I remain both critically loyal and loyally critical, spreads over some five generations. Through its century old existence, the struggles and tension between theology and praxis has been in the center. And there, in the very essence of Pentecostalism itself, while some are always celebrating and being celebrated in the office or temple, others are always pushed in the periphery of normal life, hidden from the world behind closed doors and seeking a much deeper experience with God.

These modern day mystics are not only forgotten, but often forbidden. For their riot for righteousness cannot be conceived, contained and controlled by the religious norms of organized officiality. They speak as prophets to a world they so fervently try to escape from, about a reality that does not exist in the normal believer’s mindset. A stage of spirituality that cannot be preached without being lived in the social existence. And a relationship of God that goes far beyond common relationism and into God himself. That God, Who does not abide in offices and temples, but on the cross outside of the city walls…

But I knew nothing of this until that cold winter morning when the phone rang through darkness of the night. Knowing what is coming, rarely changes what we have done to get here.

7 Years in Bulgaria: CONFESSIONS of a Pentecostal Preacher
by Dony K. Donev, D.Min.
Upcoming Releases for United States (October, 2020)

30 Years of Miracles: 2008

November 1, 2020 by  
Filed under Featured, Missions, News

Ministering in Sofia with Three Services a Day (July 1, 2008)

Ministering at the Grace Church of God in Sofia, Catholic Ecumenical Apostolic Church of Bulgaria and the Gipsy ghetto of Phillipovtzyi, on the Westside of the capital Sofia. The brief sermons were followed by an hour long alter services in which we prayed for people and anointed them for their needs. Through the prayer a number of people reported various healings. A father and son we prayed for were respectively baptized in the Holy Spirit and delivered from drugs. Among many other healings that happened, one miracle in particular stands out. A father of a little girl came into the service requesting to be anointed with oil and prayer from for his two month old daughter whom he left in hospital with double pneumonia. He returned the next day to report that he girl was healed after the prayer and released by the doctors with a clean bill of health.

Preaching in Yambol (July 20, 2008)

We have been preaching through the Gospel of Mark in the Pentecostal Church in Yambol for several weeks now. As we have trusted the Holy Spirit in the interpretation of the Gospel text, we have seen again how the Word of God is confirmed with miracles and wonders. These signs have surpassed simple healings, supplying of financial needs or family restoration and has proceeded into life transforming experiences expressed in salvation, sanctification, Spirit baptism and extraordinary illumination opening the spiritual eyes of many to receive the text in a practical experiential matter of which many have not been yet aware. We have literally seen how the Word touches hurt hearts, heals sorrowed souls and transformers lives forever. And this is the miracle of preaching the Good News of God to the world. For if we want revival to go on, the Gospel must be preached…

Mission BULGARIA 2008 Miracles Reports (September 10, 2008)

We were pleasantly surprised upon our return to Yambol with a new healing report. During the Wednesday night service in Yambol the worship team always sings the old gospel song “There’s Power in the Blood” right before we minister the word. After the song a lady that plays the violin testified that some ten years ago, while ministering in Yambol we had asked for that same song to be sung before the message. She sang the song with the congregation while her left hand was quenched by a sickness not only causing her constant pain and discomfort, but disabling her from playing the violin. She testified that her healing a decade ago in one of our services was still powerful and real today. Little we knew that while she was testifying another lady in the congregation was suffering with a similar painful condition in the right side of her body disabling her leg and foot. During the time when we sung the songs and the testimony was presented she reported that she felt the presence of God in a very powerful way and continued to feel it through the next 48 hours. She later testified that God had healed her entirely from the pain and she confidently went to the doctor only to confirm that her condition had disappeared completely.

This book should have been published seven years ago in 2013. Its original subtitle was going to read “7 Years in Bulgaria.” Instead, it took seven years to finish it with all documents, research archives and new cases. Now, it is finally here and it finally reads like a story – not just choppy interviews, deposition documented testimonies or court records, but a story of struggle, strength and solitude. A story of life and a story of us.

1995-96 The establishing of the first Bulgarian Church of God in Chicago and its first split

2000-01 The contracted building of the ministry center for the Central Church of God in Sofia

2002-03 The church split in Southaven and what followed next

2005-06 The post-communist split of the Bulgarian Church of God and consecutive sub-denominations

2010-13 The social media network that cost us millions (of souls)

2016 The vote that forced to kill a church

2019-20 The sale of the ministry center for the Central Church of God in Bulgaria

READ: CONFESSIONS of a Pentecostal Preacher

CONFESSIONS of a Pentecostal Preacher

To Mark Alan
We know not why good people have to die,
but we do know we must tell their story…

Chapter I: Beyond the Church and into God

Be without fear in the face of your enemies.
Be brave and upright that God may love thee.
Speak the truth always, even if it leads to your death.
Safeguard the helpless and do no wrong.
That is your oath.
~Kingdom
of Heaven (2005)

 

Separation of church from politics of false religiosity

The phone rang heavy and long. It was 4 AM in Bulgaria, but I was already up. A friend on the other end of the line was calling from South Carolina with a warning of some bad situation. The following morning, I was going to be contacted by the Director questioning why we were ministering in churches outside of our denomination.

The truth was we had ministered in some 300 local churches across the Balkan country of Bulgaria crossing all denominational boundaries and gathering youth from just about every confession. God had used us not only to reach and minister and to lead, but to step into an untouched spiritual realm, to undertake an unfamiliar ministry paradigm and to approach a brand new dimension of reality where He was to be the center of it all. And we had obeyed without questions. Now it was time to pay the price!

* * *

Our denomination, the one to which I remain both critically loyal and loyally critical, spreads over some five generations. Through its century old existence, the struggles and tension between theology and praxis has been in the center. And there, in the very essence of Pentecostalism itself, while some are always celebrating and being celebrated in the office or temple, others are always pushed in the periphery of normal life, hidden from the world behind closed doors and seeking a much deeper experience with God.

These modern day mystics are not only forgotten, but often forbidden. For their riot for righteousness cannot be conceived, contained and controlled by the religious norms of organized officiality. They speak as prophets to a world they so fervently try to escape from, about a reality that does not exist in the normal believer’s mindset. A stage of spirituality that cannot be preached without being lived in the social existence. And a relationship of God that goes far beyond common relationism and into God himself. That God, Who does not abide in offices and temples, but on the cross outside of the city walls…

But I knew nothing of this until that cold winter morning when the phone rang through darkness of the night. Knowing what is coming, rarely changes what we have done to get here.

7 Years in Bulgaria: CONFESSIONS of a Pentecostal Preacher
by Dony K. Donev, D.Min.
Upcoming Releases for United States (October, 2020)

30 Years of Miracles: 2007

October 30, 2020 by  
Filed under Featured, Missions, News

Healing Revival in Seneca (February 15, 2007)

In the beginning of February we began a Friday Night Healing Revival at the High Falls Church of God in Seneca. We committed ourselves to spend a month of prayer and fasting before God, studying and preaching the Word while expecting healings and miracles to happen. Services began February 2nd, as we invited other churches to join us in prayer and fasting expecting God’s miraculous intervention through a fresh experience of the power of the Holy Spirit.

Various Healings Reported

Several healings were reported as early as the first Friday night service. Other testimonies followed in the days to come, as people moved in faith and prayed during the altar services. This is no different than our ministry experience in Bulgaria in the past two years, where in the midst of numerous salvations and Holy Spirit baptisms, healings were reported on a regular basis. Just a reminder that God still has the power to save, heal and deliver.

Wave of Healing Revival

We have received responses from churches as far as Mississippi and Maryland who have also prayed and fasted for a move of the Spirit expecting miracles and healings. We are persuaded beyond a shadow of a doubt that in the beginning of the 21st century God is doing a new thing purposing a complete physical and emotional healing of his people. If your church has also prayed for a healing revival, please let us know how we can partner with you in this ministry endeavor.

Mission BULGARIA 2007 (April 20, 2007)

The itinerary of the small mission team contains the minimum of four weekly trips to villages in the area. They often hold up to twenty services per week as the team is always open for new opportunities for ministry. Their church meetings are often accompanied with miracles and healings, which have drawn many new converts.

This book should have been published seven years ago in 2013. Its original subtitle was going to read “7 Years in Bulgaria.” Instead, it took seven years to finish it with all documents, research archives and new cases. Now, it is finally here and it finally reads like a story – not just choppy interviews, deposition documented testimonies or court records, but a story of struggle, strength and solitude. A story of life and a story of us.

1995-96 The establishing of the first Bulgarian Church of God in Chicago and its first split

2000-01 The contracted building of the ministry center for the Central Church of God in Sofia

2002-03 The church split in Southaven and what followed next

2005-06 The post-communist split of the Bulgarian Church of God and consecutive sub-denominations

2010-13 The social media network that cost us millions (of souls)

2016 The vote that forced to kill a church

2019-20 The sale of the ministry center for the Central Church of God in Bulgaria

READ: CONFESSIONS of a Pentecostal Preacher

CONFESSIONS of a Pentecostal Preacher

To Mark Alan
We know not why good people have to die,
but we do know we must tell their story…

Chapter I: Beyond the Church and into God

Be without fear in the face of your enemies.
Be brave and upright that God may love thee.
Speak the truth always, even if it leads to your death.
Safeguard the helpless and do no wrong.
That is your oath.
~Kingdom
of Heaven (2005)

 

Separation of church from politics of false religiosity

The phone rang heavy and long. It was 4 AM in Bulgaria, but I was already up. A friend on the other end of the line was calling from South Carolina with a warning of some bad situation. The following morning, I was going to be contacted by the Director questioning why we were ministering in churches outside of our denomination.

The truth was we had ministered in some 300 local churches across the Balkan country of Bulgaria crossing all denominational boundaries and gathering youth from just about every confession. God had used us not only to reach and minister and to lead, but to step into an untouched spiritual realm, to undertake an unfamiliar ministry paradigm and to approach a brand new dimension of reality where He was to be the center of it all. And we had obeyed without questions. Now it was time to pay the price!

* * *

Our denomination, the one to which I remain both critically loyal and loyally critical, spreads over some five generations. Through its century old existence, the struggles and tension between theology and praxis has been in the center. And there, in the very essence of Pentecostalism itself, while some are always celebrating and being celebrated in the office or temple, others are always pushed in the periphery of normal life, hidden from the world behind closed doors and seeking a much deeper experience with God.

These modern day mystics are not only forgotten, but often forbidden. For their riot for righteousness cannot be conceived, contained and controlled by the religious norms of organized officiality. They speak as prophets to a world they so fervently try to escape from, about a reality that does not exist in the normal believer’s mindset. A stage of spirituality that cannot be preached without being lived in the social existence. And a relationship of God that goes far beyond common relationism and into God himself. That God, Who does not abide in offices and temples, but on the cross outside of the city walls…

But I knew nothing of this until that cold winter morning when the phone rang through darkness of the night. Knowing what is coming, rarely changes what we have done to get here.

7 Years in Bulgaria: CONFESSIONS of a Pentecostal Preacher
by Dony K. Donev, D.Min.
Upcoming Releases for United States (October, 2020)

30 Years of Miracles: 2006

October 25, 2020 by  
Filed under Featured, Missions, News

2006: The Year of Promise (January 7, 2006)

As last April in 2005 approached, we already knew that our presence in Bulgaria was needed and quickly prepared for our return. The days of ministry which followed upon our arrival in the country could have only been characterized as a miracle. As we continued to follow the leadership of the Holy Spirit, new doors for ministry were opened, new relationships were established and revival was revealed to the hearts of many Bulgarians as the new-yet-old paradigm for church ministry and personal growth. While watching how at times hundreds of lives were being touched by His move, our understanding of God and His power, our way of doing ministry and theology and our very lives and souls were slowly transformed to accommodate God’s heart for national revival emerging from supernatural individual restoration.

Ministering in Bulgaria (April 30, 2006)

With a desire to return back to Bulgaria for another term of ministry, we did not know when or how it would come to be. After much prayer and belief that 2006 is our year of promise, we took a step of faith to do what seamed to be impossible and began to prepare for our trip to Bulgaria.  After taking this step, miracle after miracle took place in our lives.  The first was the fact that we were able to get airline tickets less than a month before leaving that were cheaper than if we would have gotten them months in advance.  Upon our arrival we again were blessed with someone to pick us up from the airport and take us to our final destination of Yambol.  Though after arriving in Yambol we did not stay there long, for our schedule for the end of March and the coming month of April were already full.

Ministering in Samokov (May 22, 2006)

This past Sunday the miracle occurred again. Led by the Holy Spirit we found ourselves in Samokov ministering to the same Church of God congregation there. We preached and prayed with the congregation and were to meet again with several old acquaintances. A citywide evangelization meeting in cooperation with the Assemblies of God Church was held in the center of town that same evening. Over three thousand were in attendance. We are already planning our next return to the city of Samokov to hold a regional youth conference there.

Ministering in Bulgaria (June 27, 2006)

An elderly lady testified that in our service in Yambol last month, the sharp pain in her heart disappeared and she has not felt it since. Many more testified of miraculous healings and spoke of receiving a fresh touch from the Lord. In The Bourgas the family of a teenage boy on drugs was blessed through the miracle of his deliverance. The local church was able to participate in the process allocating resources to provide care for his recovery and spiritual growth.

Healing in the Midst of Revival (November 10, 2006)

After the Monday night service of the revival we held in Sofia, a lady came to us and testified of a healing in her left arm where she had been experiencing tremendous pain to the point of not being able to move it. She further reported that during the service the pain completely left her body. While in revival services in Bourgas a similar healing took place. In the middle of the alter call, an elderly lady testified with a shout and with her hands raise to the Lord in thanks for a physical healing. This lady testified that before the service she could not move her arm or leg on one side of her body and that during the time at the alter she received an instant healing in which she was able to walk without hindrance and could move her arm and open her crippled hand. We held a total 33 services in 24 days in Bulgaria during the month of October as part of our 2006 Revival Harvest Campaign. Many were touched and transformed by the power of God while ministering during two revivals and a number of regional meetings and youth rallies in major Bulgarian cities. On Monday night during our last revival before our departure which was held in the oldest Bulgarian Pentecostal church in the Black Sea port city of Bourgas, a lady received her miracle and was healed from cancer. The case was later confirmed by her doctor.

This book should have been published seven years ago in 2013. Its original subtitle was going to read “7 Years in Bulgaria.” Instead, it took seven years to finish it with all documents, research archives and new cases. Now, it is finally here and it finally reads like a story – not just choppy interviews, deposition documented testimonies or court records, but a story of struggle, strength and solitude. A story of life and a story of us.

1995-96 The establishing of the first Bulgarian Church of God in Chicago and its first split

2000-01 The contracted building of the ministry center for the Central Church of God in Sofia

2002-03 The church split in Southaven and what followed next

2005-06 The post-communist split of the Bulgarian Church of God and consecutive sub-denominations

2010-13 The social media network that cost us millions (of souls)

2016 The vote that forced to kill a church

2019-20 The sale of the ministry center for the Central Church of God in Bulgaria

READ: CONFESSIONS of a Pentecostal Preacher

CONFESSIONS of a Pentecostal Preacher

To Mark Alan
We know not why good people have to die,
but we do know we must tell their story…

Chapter I: Beyond the Church and into God

Be without fear in the face of your enemies.
Be brave and upright that God may love thee.
Speak the truth always, even if it leads to your death.
Safeguard the helpless and do no wrong.
That is your oath.
~Kingdom
of Heaven (2005)

 

Separation of church from politics of false religiosity

The phone rang heavy and long. It was 4 AM in Bulgaria, but I was already up. A friend on the other end of the line was calling from South Carolina with a warning of some bad situation. The following morning, I was going to be contacted by the Director questioning why we were ministering in churches outside of our denomination.

The truth was we had ministered in some 300 local churches across the Balkan country of Bulgaria crossing all denominational boundaries and gathering youth from just about every confession. God had used us not only to reach and minister and to lead, but to step into an untouched spiritual realm, to undertake an unfamiliar ministry paradigm and to approach a brand new dimension of reality where He was to be the center of it all. And we had obeyed without questions. Now it was time to pay the price!

* * *

Our denomination, the one to which I remain both critically loyal and loyally critical, spreads over some five generations. Through its century old existence, the struggles and tension between theology and praxis has been in the center. And there, in the very essence of Pentecostalism itself, while some are always celebrating and being celebrated in the office or temple, others are always pushed in the periphery of normal life, hidden from the world behind closed doors and seeking a much deeper experience with God.

These modern day mystics are not only forgotten, but often forbidden. For their riot for righteousness cannot be conceived, contained and controlled by the religious norms of organized officiality. They speak as prophets to a world they so fervently try to escape from, about a reality that does not exist in the normal believer’s mindset. A stage of spirituality that cannot be preached without being lived in the social existence. And a relationship of God that goes far beyond common relationism and into God himself. That God, Who does not abide in offices and temples, but on the cross outside of the city walls…

But I knew nothing of this until that cold winter morning when the phone rang through darkness of the night. Knowing what is coming, rarely changes what we have done to get here.

7 Years in Bulgaria: CONFESSIONS of a Pentecostal Preacher
by Dony K. Donev, D.Min.
Upcoming Releases for United States (October, 2020)

30 Years of Miracles: 2005

October 20, 2020 by  
Filed under Featured, Missions, News

Is There Revival in Bulgaria? (August 30, 2005)

During the process of completing this article, “Verfolgte Christen” (“Persecuted Christians”) published a letter by pastor Vesselin Lazarov from Shumen, Bulgaria. He reported that a young man fell to the ground, dead at a Turkish wedding. People tried to resuscitate him, but without success. Then a church member prayed for him and called him back to life. As the man stood up, over 100 astonished eyewitnesses shouted “A miracle! A miracle!” These testimonies are only a few of over 600 cases of literal, physical resurrections, which have been documented in the past 15 years in Bulgaria. Virtually all of them have occurred in some relations to Bulgarian Protestant congregation(s) or minister(s). Is there revival in Bulgaria? I think this question has been already answered literally.

Mission BULGARIA 2005

In 2005, our team was successful in establishing several new congregations in Southern Bulgaria. The work was not without challenges from the particularity of the geographical location and the cultural setting which included: (1) ongoing migration of people between towns and villages, as well as internationally, (2) opposition from Eastern Orthodox priests and restrictions by local authorities (both described as illegal by the constitution) and (3) economical challenges and extreme poverty in the Bulgarian villages (especially through the winter periods). These factors often disable the local people and limit the ministry, as some of them are still ongoing and form the context in which the team ministers. Yet, Mission BULGARIA has been successful in establishing a growing number of new congregations and providing pastoral care for each of them every week. We were able to travel with the team every week and minister to the churches in the Yambol region and were encouraged by their testimonies of salvation, provision, healing and even bodily resurrection.

This book should have been published seven years ago in 2013. Its original subtitle was going to read “7 Years in Bulgaria.” Instead, it took seven years to finish it with all documents, research archives and new cases. Now, it is finally here and it finally reads like a story – not just choppy interviews, deposition documented testimonies or court records, but a story of struggle, strength and solitude. A story of life and a story of us.

1995-96 The establishing of the first Bulgarian Church of God in Chicago and its first split

2000-01 The contracted building of the ministry center for the Central Church of God in Sofia

2002-03 The church split in Southaven and what followed next

2005-06 The post-communist split of the Bulgarian Church of God and consecutive sub-denominations

2010-13 The social media network that cost us millions (of souls)

2016 The vote that forced to kill a church

2019-20 The sale of the ministry center for the Central Church of God in Bulgaria

READ: CONFESSIONS of a Pentecostal Preacher

CONFESSIONS of a Pentecostal Preacher

To Mark Alan
We know not why good people have to die,
but we do know we must tell their story…

Chapter I: Beyond the Church and into God

Be without fear in the face of your enemies.
Be brave and upright that God may love thee.
Speak the truth always, even if it leads to your death.
Safeguard the helpless and do no wrong.
That is your oath.
~Kingdom
of Heaven (2005)

 

Separation of church from politics of false religiosity

The phone rang heavy and long. It was 4 AM in Bulgaria, but I was already up. A friend on the other end of the line was calling from South Carolina with a warning of some bad situation. The following morning, I was going to be contacted by the Director questioning why we were ministering in churches outside of our denomination.

The truth was we had ministered in some 300 local churches across the Balkan country of Bulgaria crossing all denominational boundaries and gathering youth from just about every confession. God had used us not only to reach and minister and to lead, but to step into an untouched spiritual realm, to undertake an unfamiliar ministry paradigm and to approach a brand new dimension of reality where He was to be the center of it all. And we had obeyed without questions. Now it was time to pay the price!

* * *

Our denomination, the one to which I remain both critically loyal and loyally critical, spreads over some five generations. Through its century old existence, the struggles and tension between theology and praxis has been in the center. And there, in the very essence of Pentecostalism itself, while some are always celebrating and being celebrated in the office or temple, others are always pushed in the periphery of normal life, hidden from the world behind closed doors and seeking a much deeper experience with God.

These modern day mystics are not only forgotten, but often forbidden. For their riot for righteousness cannot be conceived, contained and controlled by the religious norms of organized officiality. They speak as prophets to a world they so fervently try to escape from, about a reality that does not exist in the normal believer’s mindset. A stage of spirituality that cannot be preached without being lived in the social existence. And a relationship of God that goes far beyond common relationism and into God himself. That God, Who does not abide in offices and temples, but on the cross outside of the city walls…

But I knew nothing of this until that cold winter morning when the phone rang through darkness of the night. Knowing what is coming, rarely changes what we have done to get here.

7 Years in Bulgaria: CONFESSIONS of a Pentecostal Preacher
by Dony K. Donev, D.Min.
Upcoming Releases for United States (October, 2020)

30 Years of Miracles: 2004

October 15, 2020 by  
Filed under Featured, Missions, News

2004 Ministry Strategy (January 11, 2004)

Recently, we held another training seminar for the Yambol region. More than 80 local church leaders joined together. Prayer clothes representing the needs of the sick were brought to the meeting, and our team had received a number of healings reports. Among them, Shtiliana Paskova from the village of Leyarovo was miraculously healed of a tumor the size of a tennis ball, which had been determined by doctors as cancerous. Also, Maria Miteva received a vision during the prayer for healing, that God was healing her. Immediately after the prayer she felt that the long-years of back pain for which no medicine had been able to help her had miraculously left.

Our active churches in 2004 (February 26, 2004)

Since September 1996, our work in Bulgaria has grown tremendously from two village churches to a Regional Pentecostal Fellowship of more than ten local congregations within the Church of God. As our team of eight ministers averages over 100 services per month, we are faithfully providing pastoral care for the following churches:

  1. Alexandrovo Church 45 miles away from Yambol has 10 members. Cup & Cross Ministry Team has held 1 service per week there since May, 2001.
  2. Bogorovo Church 38 miles away from Yambol has 30 members including the mayor. Cup & Cross Ministry Team has held 1 service per week there since October, 2000.
  3. Dobrinovo Church 42 miles away from Yambol has 30 members. Cup & Cross Ministry Team has held 3 services per week there since March, 2003.
  4. Iretchekovo Church 20 miles away from Yambol has 26 members. Cup & Cross Ministry Team has held 1 service per week there since January, 2003.
  5. Kamenetz Church 32 miles away from Yambolhas 50 members including the mayor.  Cup & Cross Ministry Team has held 5 services per week there since February, 2000.
  6. Kozarevo Church 7 miles way from Yambolhas 58 members.  Cup & Cross Ministry Team has held 1 service per week there since December, 2003.
  7. Leyarovo Church 38 miles away from Yambolhas 12 members including the mayor.  Cup & Cross Ministry Team has held 2 services per week there since May, 2000.
  8. Lulin Church 28 miles away from Yambolhas 17 members including the mayor.  Cup & Cross Ministry Team has held 2 services per week there since October, 2000.
  9. Parvenetz Church 35 miles away from Yambol has 6 members. Cup & Cross Ministry Team has held 1 service per week there since March, 2003.
  10. Polyana Church 52 miles away from Yambol has 60 members. Cup & Cross Ministry Team has held 2 services per week there since October, 1999.
  11. Robovo Church 38 miles away from Yambolhas 10 members. Cup & Cross Ministry Team has held 1 service per week there since May, 2000.
  12. Tamarino Church 30 miles away from Yambolhas 10 members. Cup & Cross Ministry Team has held 1 service per week there since December, 2002.
  13. Tchukarovo Church 52 miles away from Yambolhas 12 members including the mayor.  Cup & Cross Ministry Team has held 2 services per week there since May, 2000.
  14. Vodenitchane Church 26 miles away from Yambol has 16 members. Cup & Cross Ministry Team has held 2 services per week there since January, 2003.

A MAN ALIVE (May 5, 2004)

The communion service our team held on the Thursday before Easter in the Kamenetz church lasted over five hours.  Close to midnight, my mother and her team opened an altar service and prayed for the sick. One lady whose brother was deathly ill brought for prayer a tank top that belonged to her brother. They prayed for the healing of the man and laid hands on the tank top believing for a miracle. Unfortunately, several days later the man died in his home. The family brought a casket to the home and began preparing for the funeral. In the Bulgarian villages this is usually done in the house of the deceased. His sister wished to use the tank top as a part of his burial clothing. As the tank top touched his dead body, her brother came back to life. Afraid that he may get shocked at the view of the burial preparations and the casket, the family did not allow him to see it. Right now, the man is alive while the unused casket is locked in another room of the house. On Easter Sunday, Bulgarians greet each other with the greeting, “Christ is risen.” The response is, “He is risen indeed.” Having heard of the story of the resurrected man, the people from our churches and from the villages in the region have been greeting each other with the words, “Christ is risen and we are risen with Him!”

Over 100,000 Bulgarian Protestants (September 1, 2004)

For the past two years, along with regularly-held weekly services, the Cup & Cross team in Bulgaria has been working on a survey purposing to establish the geographical location and historical background of all Protestant churches in the Yambol region. We are happy to announce that the completion of this survey was marked with a healing crusade in the town of Sliven. Our team has traveled and introduced our ministry to every Protestant church in the Yambol region and has compiled a detailed analysis which will become a  part of our ministry strategy.

A Weekend of Revival (September 17, 2004)

On Friday, September 17, 2004 a group with one vision gathered for prayer and fasting at the church in the village of Liulin. Each of the leaders brought five people from his or her local church to participate in the day of consecration before the Lord. The day finished with a powerful church service in the evening which continued with testimonies and praise. The group then traveled to the church in Kamenetz where they continued the fasting through Saturday and then held a healing service in the evening.

October Ministry Report (October 1, 2004)

In the month of September, Cup & Cross Ministries started a new service in the town of Zimnitza which is located northwest of Yambol. In the past, our team has held services and crusades in the area, however, the new weekly service is not alike any of them. The service is specifically designed for people with a terminal diagnosis. Since our ministry began holding healing services every week, the number of healing testimonies have grown significantly. This present endeavor has an evangelistic character and is organized exclusively by people who have been healed by God. The service purposes to create an environment in which people who have been healed minister to people who need healing. Here are the testimonies of the participants:

  1. Genka Z. from the village of Pollyana, 46 years of age and a member of the village ministry team presented a need for healing of her two baby grandchildren. They were sent home from the hospital with severe stomachaches after the doctors were unable to diagnose them. On October 22, 1999 our team prayed for two baby clothes which were brought to the children. Approximately two hours after the prayer, the pain disappeared and for the babies stopped crying. Last year, the children traveled with our team to a water baptism service and quoted psalms.
  2. The testimony of the grandmother Genka, however, is even greater. In 2000, at the age of 42, she was diagnosed with lung cancer. The Bourgas Oncology Hospital sent her home in April of 2000 with no hope. The church prayed for her and she is still living today.
  3. In 2001, a heavy roof collapsed on her. She spent the next six months in a cast with the left side of her body completely paralyzed, praying for healing and for the salvation of her family. The church prayed for her again and the Lord healed her. It was then that she opened her house for the prayer meetings each Monday and Thursday. Today her whole family including three daughters, three son-in-laws and three grandchildren are saved.

This book should have been published seven years ago in 2013. Its original subtitle was going to read “7 Years in Bulgaria.” Instead, it took seven years to finish it with all documents, research archives and new cases. Now, it is finally here and it finally reads like a story – not just choppy interviews, deposition documented testimonies or court records, but a story of struggle, strength and solitude. A story of life and a story of us.

1995-96 The establishing of the first Bulgarian Church of God in Chicago and its first split

2000-01 The contracted building of the ministry center for the Central Church of God in Sofia

2002-03 The church split in Southaven and what followed next

2005-06 The post-communist split of the Bulgarian Church of God and consecutive sub-denominations

2010-13 The social media network that cost us millions (of souls)

2016 The vote that forced to kill a church

2019-20 The sale of the ministry center for the Central Church of God in Bulgaria

READ: CONFESSIONS of a Pentecostal Preacher

CONFESSIONS of a Pentecostal Preacher

To Mark Alan
We know not why good people have to die,
but we do know we must tell their story…

Chapter I: Beyond the Church and into God

Be without fear in the face of your enemies.
Be brave and upright that God may love thee.
Speak the truth always, even if it leads to your death.
Safeguard the helpless and do no wrong.
That is your oath.
~Kingdom
of Heaven (2005)

 

Separation of church from politics of false religiosity

The phone rang heavy and long. It was 4 AM in Bulgaria, but I was already up. A friend on the other end of the line was calling from South Carolina with a warning of some bad situation. The following morning, I was going to be contacted by the Director questioning why we were ministering in churches outside of our denomination.

The truth was we had ministered in some 300 local churches across the Balkan country of Bulgaria crossing all denominational boundaries and gathering youth from just about every confession. God had used us not only to reach and minister and to lead, but to step into an untouched spiritual realm, to undertake an unfamiliar ministry paradigm and to approach a brand new dimension of reality where He was to be the center of it all. And we had obeyed without questions. Now it was time to pay the price!

* * *

Our denomination, the one to which I remain both critically loyal and loyally critical, spreads over some five generations. Through its century old existence, the struggles and tension between theology and praxis has been in the center. And there, in the very essence of Pentecostalism itself, while some are always celebrating and being celebrated in the office or temple, others are always pushed in the periphery of normal life, hidden from the world behind closed doors and seeking a much deeper experience with God.

These modern day mystics are not only forgotten, but often forbidden. For their riot for righteousness cannot be conceived, contained and controlled by the religious norms of organized officiality. They speak as prophets to a world they so fervently try to escape from, about a reality that does not exist in the normal believer’s mindset. A stage of spirituality that cannot be preached without being lived in the social existence. And a relationship of God that goes far beyond common relationism and into God himself. That God, Who does not abide in offices and temples, but on the cross outside of the city walls…

But I knew nothing of this until that cold winter morning when the phone rang through darkness of the night. Knowing what is coming, rarely changes what we have done to get here.

7 Years in Bulgaria: CONFESSIONS of a Pentecostal Preacher
by Dony K. Donev, D.Min.
Upcoming Releases for United States (October, 2020)

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