50 Days of Anti-Government Protests in Bulgaria

September 5, 2020 by  
Filed under Featured, News

Today is the 50th day of protests against the government and the chief prosecutor. Last night the dissatisfied brought a bedside table in front of the Council of Ministers. The reasons for Boyko Borissov’s resignation were written on it on white sheets.

They explained that this locker is the antithesis of the other – from the photos. And they put a clock on top to count the remaining time in the office.

And the most discussed topic last night was the resignation of the Minister of Justice.

“No one is interested in this resignation. “The agenda is Borissov’s resignation, the resignation of his entire government,” protesters said.

“The reason for his resignation is not serious, because I realized that these were some comments addressed to him. In my opinion, this resignation will not help at all “, other dissatisfied people think.

The counter-protest

For the third night in a row, citizens gathered in front of the National Palace of Culture, condemning the actions of the blocked key places in Sofia and demanding the impeachment of President Rumen Radev, whom they call “the disintegrator of the nation.” There were mixed comments among the demonstrators about the resignation of Justice Minister Danail Kirilov.

Demonstration in front of the Spanish embassy

Demonstration in front of the Spanish embassy
A demonstration took place in front of the Spanish Embassy in Sofia. The “Together for Change” movement of politicians Alexander Tomov and Nastimir Ananiev insists on clarity about the investigation of the authorities in Madrid about the origin of the money with which property was acquired in Barcelona (allegedly owned by Prime Minister Boyko Borissov), BNR reported .

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=saZ28BClsA0

I was called … Celebrating 30 Years of Global Ministry

September 1, 2020 by  
Filed under Events, Featured, Missions, News, Publication, Research


During the month of September, our ministry is celebrating 30 years in Global Harvest. I was saved in my hometown of Yambol Bulgaria on August 9, 1990 and baptized with the Holy Spirit seven days later. In two weeks time, God called me to preach and I preached my first sermon one Friday night in September at the Church of God in the mountain town of Pravetz, Bulgaria where a small group of Pentecostal believers had kept the faith during the long years of the Communist Regime. At that time, Pravetz was known as a stronghold of Communism where the Communist president who ruled Bulgaria for 36 years was born. Many, including school officials, did not receive our faith and openly tried to suppress its expression. All night prayer meetings were a weekly event, and chain fasting almost never stopped. The Bulgarian Church of God was still underground.

Only 14 were present at the meeting as I preached from Genesis chapter 14. Little I knew that just a few short months later, the youth group of the church would count over 100 strong and growing, and with the Berlin Wall now fallen revival was on the way. That night in Pravetz Bulgaria I just preached a sermon from the Word. That same Word, which God still claims cannot return void. For Revival must go on …

Now 30 years later, the time to tell the story has finally come!

 

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

23% Of Pastors Deal With Mental Illness in 2020

August 30, 2020 by  
Filed under Featured, News

23% Of Pastors Deal With Mental Illness

It’s common to think of pastors as perfect, but they’re human too. This statistic is important because it shows that mental illness is an area churches need to address. Not only do pastors deal with mental illness, but almost 75% of pastors knew someone (member, relative, and/or friend) dealing with a mental illness.

 

 

Why Do Church Members Leave in 2020?

August 25, 2020 by  
Filed under Featured, News

On the other hand, what makes them leave? Believe it or not, it’s not politics or music. The majority of devoted church members (48%) only leave if they have to move to a new home. However, 19% leave when the preaching style changes, so it’s important to take changes slowly to avoid pushing your members away. Other reasons church members leave, according to LifeWay, include:

  • Pastor leaves (12%)
  • Politics (9%)
  • Music changes (5%)
  • Conflicts (4%)

Why Do Church Goers Stay in 2020?

August 20, 2020 by  
Filed under Featured, News

What is it that makes some church goers stay, but not others? Most often, they stay because the church’s theology aligns with their own beliefs. LifeWay Research found that 52% feel their beliefs completely align with the church, while 42% say their beliefs are mostly aligned.

Church Goers Are Loyal

Despite how it may seem, most church goers are actually quite loyal to their church. In fact, 35% of regular church goers have been at the same church for 10-24 years. Another 27% have attended the same church for over 25 years. The most loyal denominations are Lutherans, Methodists and Baptists, according to LifeWay. Before you worry that your members are going to leave, remember that 57% of church goers say they’re committed to staying with their church. So, unless you make major changes suddenly, over half of your members are likely to stick with you.

I was baptized…

August 15, 2020 by  
Filed under Featured, News

As we are approaching 30 years in ministry in 2020, the centennial of Bulgarian Pentecostalism, a quarter of a century since we started the Bulgarian church in Chicago and several other important anniversaries, I have felt compelled to finally complete several books that have been long in the making. As I was digging threw some old documents just recently, I came to my first recorded account of being baptized with the Holy Spirit. Being a fifth generation Pentecostal, this experience is important too me and I have written and spoken about it in many occasions. However, this first account I have recoded many over 20 plus years ago is a personal recollection I would like to share today:

That night my cousin started to talk to me after church asking me if I was saved. I obviously was not, so she told me that God could change my life in one prayer. I refused to pray, but she kept on talking and I realized if I did not pray the prayer then, I never would. When I repeated the prayer after her, she asked me if I felt anything. My answer was, “No.” She assured me I would feel something soon.  After this, everyone went home. As soon as I got home I took my pack of cigarettes and I threw them out the window. Indeed that night, something happened. For the first time in my life I felt free. It was August 11, 1990.

The next day was Sunday, and I took my first communion in church. On Monday I started fasting for the baptism of the Holy Spirit. I talked with my cousin that night telling her about my decision to fast three days for the baptism. She said that I did not need to fast because the Holy Spirit was already given to the believers and the only thing I needed to do was to receive Him.

On Thursday night (August 16, 1990) we had a healing meeting during the first Pentecostal conference after the fall of Communism. After the sermon, the preacher said we were going to do three things: first – we would all prayer together, second – he would pray for us and third – he would tell us to do what we have not been able to do and we would do it. And so we did. We all prayed. Then he prayed. I remember praying for the baptism. When he said, “Do what you were not able to do before” the Holy Spirit filled me, and I started to speaking in tongues and have not stopped since then.

A month later I returned to school. Everything was different then. I witnessed to all my school-mates the first night I was there, telling them about the change in my life. Only one decided to go to church with me. He got saved that following Friday. It was on the night when I preached my first sermon.

I had been involved in the church for a few months, when my pastor asked me to start working with the youth group. I started with twelve people, many dreams, and no experience. The results were likewise. Our youth meetings on Tuesday night were filled with prayer and praise, rather than long sermons. We would often get together for prayer, and pray all night long. Our expectations were great. I remember praying that everyone I looked at would get saved.

A few months later, in the spring of 1991, when the Lord blessed us abundantly, people from our school started coming to the little building at the end of the town, a former communist club, where we had our meetings. Many were saved during our meetings. A number of skinheads, drug addicts, people that everyone knew in school, came to our meetings, were delivered and joined the youth group. Everyone in the group received the baptism with the Holy Spirit. I distantly remember one night when 26 people were filled during and spoke in tongues the prayer. The youth group grew quickly with the hundreds in attendance. For all of us that had prayed for revival, this was a time of refreshing and encouragement

1992 in the city of Pravetz, we experienced one of the greatest student revivals

1993 I graduated from the school there

1994 I came to the States to start college

1995 The Bulgarian church in Chicago started

1996 Bibliata.com was started

Now 30 years later, the time to tell the story has finally come…

 

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

I was saved…

August 10, 2020 by  
Filed under Featured, News

During the month of September, our ministry is celebrating 30 years in the ministry. I was saved in my hometown of Yambol Bulgaria on August 9, 1990 and baptized with the Holy Spirit seven days later. In two weeks time God called me to preach and I preached my first sermon one September Friday at the Church of God in the small mountain town of Pravetz, Bulgaria. Fourteen were present at the meeting. The Bulgarian Church of God was still underground. Little I knew that only a few months later, the youth group of the church would count over 100 strong and growing, the Berlin Wall would have had fallen and revival would’ve been on the way. That night in Pravetz Bulgaria I just preached a sermon from the Word. That same Word, which God still claims cannot return void. For Revival must go on …

Our story has a humble beginning working with small Pentecostal-holiness groups in the Bulgarian mountains and growing the Pravetz Church of God youth group to over 300 members in a city of 5,000. And thus our ministry moved forward: from the storefront churches of Bulgaria to establishing the Bulgarian congregation of Chicago; from the backwoods Bulgarian villages to postgraduate level research; from the old red back hymnal to the latest technological invention; from hitchhiking to the charter flights and using any transportation necessary to get to the Sunday morning service and minister. We have done whatever needed to be done for the ministry to go on in Bulgaria and abroad. But we never forgot where we came from and we have faithfully kept on returning to minister to our humble beginnings…

At age 30 a ministry is not an old veteran, but just starting in its prime. We are both convinced and committed toward a new level of ministry in 2020 in a new spiritual realm. With this vision in mind, we have present the Bulgarian Church of God a dynamic strategy for the next five years of its development and ministry. We invite you to partner with us in payer and fasting for this endeavor.

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

U.S. sends thousands of troops to Bulgaria amid month-long protests and political unrest

August 5, 2020 by  
Filed under Events, Featured, Media, News

Washington may send troops to Bulgaria and Romania as part of the redistribution of US forces in Europe. This was reported by the Wall Street Journal, citing sources familiar with the Pentagon’s plans. According to the information, the redistribution of Stryker brigades in Bulgaria and Romania is possible as a result of President Trump’s decision to withdraw 12,000 troops from Germany, half of which will be sent elsewhere in Europe, including the Black Sea region. The process would take years and cost at least $6 billion. The Stryker Brigades are combat teams of thousands of soldiers and hundreds of vehicles, ready to be transferred by transport aircraft and deployed within 96 hours. NATO air-force bases in Novo Selo and Bezmer are withing minutes of our long term ministry location in the area. Newly built migrant camps are also located nearby along the highway leading to the boarder with Turkey, less than an hour of (normal speed) drive.

CONFESSIONS of a Pentecostal Preacher (9.1.20.)

August 1, 2020 by  
Filed under Books, Featured, News

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

A quarter of a century ago in Chicago

July 30, 2020 by  
Filed under Featured, Missions, News, Publication

I left Chicago on this day 25 years ago (July 30, 1995). The Bulgarian church that day held service at 1 PM with 64 Bulgarians and many other internationals in attendance. Bulgarian students from the neighboring Indiana and Wisconsin attended as well. There was even a Bulgarian family from Alaska.

It was a Sunday. I left Chicago to preach in Beloit, WI that night and then left for Washington, D.C. the following morning. While driving north with quite the speed my Carolina blue Grand National began filling with white smoke. At first, I thought the air conditioner was on its last leg in the hot Chicago summer of 1995, but the air remained strong and cold. The cloud proceeded and it was so sensible that I had to slow down and basically stop on the side of the road. In my 30 years of ministry, I have only seen this one more time – in 2011 when the Glory of God descended over a youth camp we were preaching in the Bulgarian mountains. I did finally preach in Beloit and made it to D.C. the next day, but the vision of the cloud remained with me for the next 25 years.

Meanwhile, the word of mouth had spread and the Bulgarian church in Chicago was growing among the Bulgarian diaspora. On October 7, 1995, I was able to visit the church in Chicago again and present it to the National Overseer of the Bulgarian Church of God, Pastor Pavel Ignatov who visited the Bulgarian congregation in Chicago for the first time. By that time, it has become evident that the initial structuring for growth was giving more than expected results. The church became not only the first officially registered Bulgarian Pentecostal congregation in the United States, but also an important social and educational center able to minister to the 100,000 Bulgarians that live in the Great Lake region today.

Called to another mission, I left Chicago on July 30, 1995. The church bulletin upon my departure under Farewell and Appreciation read: “Today we are saying thank you to Dony for a job well done this past summer. He has served our church faithfully, and has been a tremendous blessing to Narragansett Ministries. Immediately following worship this morning, there is a dinner in Dony’s honor in the fellowship hall. And everyone is invited to attend.” Quiescently, while writing this next book for the quarter century anniversary of the Bulgarian Church in Chicago, I was able to find this last bulletin in a box with several dozen letters I had sent weekly to my parents in Bulgaria. Surprising even to myself, those letters contain pictures, documents, dates, growth charts and progression predictions that are surprising even to me today. I remember spending countless nights in prayer, contemplating and strategizing over the new Bulgarian church plant, but I had forgotten all this was carefully documented as a case study.

The church congregation presented me with a plaque that represented my efforts and work in Chicago, which I have also kept until now. Because this plaque represents the prayers and the vision of many who are continuing the work today, establishing and leading Bulgarian churches around the world to providing pastoral care for many who have left the homeland in search for a better life. To these ministers goes my personal token of appreciation and thanks, “Well done thou good and faithful!” For me personally today a quarter of a century later, this plaque represents one very simply thing – I never betrayed my dreams. And in my book, this is well done…

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