The White House announces new US ambassador to Bulgaria

June 20, 2022 by  
Filed under Featured, Missions, News

US President Joe Biden has nominated Kenneth Merten for new ambassador to Bulgaria in place of Herro Mustafa, who has been ambassador to Sofia since 2019. The nomination must be approved by the Senate in Washington. Kenneth Merten has acted as Special Coordinator for Haiti and he was also Ambassador to Croatia from 2012 to 2015 and Ambassador to Haiti from 2009 to 2012. Merton was also an economic adviser at the US Embassy in France. He speaks Haitian Creole, French, German and Spanish languages.

Spiritual Fullness (Fullness in the Spirit) among Early Bulgarian Pentecostals and Today

June 5, 2022 by  
Filed under Featured, Missions, News, Publication, Research

Bulgaria’s early Pentecostals insisted on a spiritual fullness that included: (1) salvation, (2) water baptism and (3) baptism with the Spirit.[1] As a formula of spiritual experience, it satisfied the witness of blood, water and Spirit (1 Jn. 5:8) on earth; but also corresponded with the triune God in heaven (1 Jn. 5:7), from whom the believer’s spiritual experience originated. Many conservative Pentecostals in Bulgaria today still uphold “the fullness” teaching and would not use Bibles that exclude Johannine Comma (1 John 5:7) for these three “bear record in heaven.”[2]

However, even with the already present Trinitarian experience of the believer and the enormous theological Methodist influence, it is astounding that the doctrine of sanctification was not taught as a separate work of grace among Bulgarian Protestants. Even when after Pentecostalism spread in Bulgaria, it was not included in the tri-fold formula for “spiritual fullness” of the believer. During the persecution of the Communist Regime, speaking in tongues during Communion was done as a spiritual confirmation that the person has “fullness in the Spirit” or is not a government agent sent by the police to spy on the rest of the church. Interpretation often followed to confirm the spiritual stand of the believer. Early Bulgarian Pentecostals did not distinguish between the initial evidence and the gift of speaking in tongues. Even communist propaganda author Boncho Assenov, who categorized Pentecostals as a sectarian cult, defined this fullness as fundamental for the sacramental theology of the early charismatic communities in Bulgaria.[3]

[1] Mollov, 209.

[2] Zarev, 28.

[3] Boncho Asenov, Religiite i sektite v Bŭlgariia (Sofia: Partizdat, 1968), 167, 367.

See also:

The Practice of Corporate Holiness within the Communion Service of Bulgarian Pentecostals

Sanctification and Personal Holiness among Early Bulgarian Pentecostals

Water Baptism among early Bulgarian Pentecostals

First Pentecostal Missionaries to Bulgaria (1920)

Our Bulgarian Chaplaincy Association celebrates 25 years of Military Ministry in Bulgaria

May 30, 2022 by  
Filed under Featured, Missions, News

chaplaincy-in-bulgariaOur Bulgarian Chaplaincy Association celebrates 25 years of Military Ministry in Bulgaria since the first event co-hosted by the Bulgarian Armed Forces and government officials in 1997.

2018 The Road toward a Balkan Multi-Ministry Center and Legal Status

2017 Bulgarian Chaplaincy Association: Legal Case Renewed

2015 Revisting the Integration Proposal with Local NATO Programs by Bulgarian Chaplaincy Association

2014 Bulgarian Chaplaincy Association: Vision and Resolution Reaffirmed

2012 First Class of the Master’s of Chaplaincy Ministry Program

2011 Master’s of Chaplaincy Ministry Program Continues

2010 Master’s of Chaplaincy Ministry Program begins in Sofia, Bulgaria

2009 Bulgarian Chaplaincy Association holds an introductory chaplaincy course in Yambol, Bulgaria

2008 The Case of a NATO Chaplaincy Model within the Bulgarian Army released

2007 Bulgarian Chaplaincy Associations Recognized by U.S. Department of State

2006 Registration for the Bulgarian Chaplaincy Association Rejected by Bulgarian Court

2005 The Bulgarian Chaplaincy Association presented before the Bulgarian Evangelical Alliance

2004 Three U.S. Bases in Bulgaria to be Built by 2010

2003 The Case of a NATO Chaplaincy Model within the Bulgarian Army

2002 First Balkan Chaplaincy Conference at the Central Church of God in Sofia, Bulgaria

2001 Church of God Chaplaincy Commission to visit Bulgaria

2000 Euro-seminar: Christian ethics in the military forces

1997 First Military Ministry Seminar in Veliko Tarnovo

With all this accomplished, in the beginning of the 21st century law and chaplaincy meet on the road to democracy as Bulgaria remains the only country in NATO without military force chaplaincy. But before chaplaincy could be legalized completely and endorsed by the state to its full functionality, several changes must be undergone. Some of them are:

  1. Legal provision allowing chaplains to work as staff in the army, which guarantees the equal presence of protestant chaplains as well.
  2. The approval, acceptance and implementation of a NATO based model for chaplaincy within the structures of the Bulgarian Army.
  3. Periodical and systematic educational strategy toward chaplaincy workers among Bulgarian evangelicals.
  4. A paradigm for cooperation of Bulgarian chaplains from various ethnic, religious and cultural backgrounds.
  5. Further research publications to enhance the efficiency of chaplaincy within the Bulgarian national context.

Also important [click to read]:

More Publications on the Topic and History of Events:

NEW Bulgarian Bible Theological Dictionary

May 20, 2022 by  
Filed under Books, Featured, Missions, News

When there’s a failure to communicate

May 10, 2022 by  
Filed under Events, Featured, Missions, News, Publication

When leaders are constantly flummoxed by those who don’t seem to get it, there exists both a leadership and communications problem. Show me a leader with poor communication skills and I’ll show you someone who will be short-lived in their position. Great leaders can communicate effectively across mediums, constituencies, and environments. They are active listeners, fluid thinkers, and know when to dial it up, down, or off.

PUTIN halts gas supplies to BULGARIA

April 30, 2022 by  
Filed under Featured, Missions, News

  • Russia demands payment in roubles to shield it from sanctions
  • EU denounces gas cut-off as ‘blackmail’
  • Kyiv reports some Russian gains in villages in east Ukraine
  • Concern grows that conflict could suck in Moldova

WARSAW/SOFIA/KYIV, April 27 (Reuters) – Europe should stop depending on Russia for trade after Moscow halted gas supplies to Bulgaria and Poland for not paying in roubles, Ukraine said, as the shutoff exposed the continent’s weaknesses and divisions on Wednesday.

The decision, denounced by European leaders as “blackmail”, comes as Russia’s own economy wilts under sanctions and Western countries are sending more arms to Kyiv despite warnings from the Kremlin to back off.

Gazprom (GAZP.MM), Russia’s gas export monopoly, suspended gas supplies “due to absence of payments in roubles”, as stipulated in a decree from Russian President Vladimir Putin that aims to soften the impact of sanctions.

“The sooner everyone in Europe recognizes that they cannot depend on Russia for trade, the sooner it will be possible to guarantee stability in European markets,” Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy said late on Wednesday. While the president of the European Commission said Gazprom’s move was “yet another attempt by Russia to use gas as an instrument of blackmail”, EU member state ambassadors asked the executive for clearer guidance on whether sending euros breached sanctions. France will host a meeting of EU energy ministers on May 2 to discuss how to deal with Russia’s move. Kremlin spokesperson Dmitry Peskov said Russia remained a reliable energy supplier and denied it was engaging in blackmail.

He declined to say how many countries had agreed to switch to paying for gas in roubles but other European customers said gas supplies were flowing normally.

On the battlefield, Ukraine reported that Russian troops had made gains in the east. Russia reported a number of blasts on its side of the border, and a blaze at an arms depot. Kyiv called the explosions “karma”.

Ukraine said Russian forces had used tear gas and stun grenades to disperse a pro-Ukraine rally in Kherson, the first big city it has seized. A series of powerful explosions caused by rockets hit the centre of Kherson late on Wednesday, Ria News agency reported.  The invasion of Ukraine has reduced towns and cities to rubble, and forced more than 5 million people to flee abroad in a conflict that has prompted fears of wider conflict in the West, unthought of for decades.

Moscow calls it a “special operation” to disarm Ukraine. Kyiv and its allies call the war an unprovoked act of aggression. With so many EU members reliant on Russian energy, the European Commission has said the EU’s gas buyers can engage with Russia’s payment scheme provided certain conditions are met. Germany’s main importer, Uniper (UN01.DE), said it could pay without violations. Austria and Hungary, among others, have also indicated they will take this route.

Bulgaria and Poland, former Soviet-era satellites that have since joined the EU and NATO, are the only two European countries with Gazprom contracts due to expire at the end of 2022, which meant their search for alternatives was under way.

160,000 Pentecostals in Bulgaria Reported by the NEW Encyclopedia of Global Pentecostalism

April 20, 2022 by  
Filed under Events, Featured, Missions, News, Publication, Research

How many people die in the Great Tribulation?

April 15, 2022 by  
Filed under Featured, Missions, News

We start with roughly 8 billion population

Revelation 6:8 KJV “And I looked, and behold a pale horse. And power was given unto them over the fourth part of the earth, to kill with sword, and with hunger, and with death, and with the beasts of the earth.”

8 bil : 4 = 2 billion dead

6 billion left alive after Rev. 6

Rev. 9:15-18 another 1/3 of the world’s population will be dead

6 bil : 3 = 2 billion dead

4 billion left alive after Rev. 9

4 bil out of the original 8 bil is 50%

The odds that anyone would survive the Great Tribulation are 50:50 or even less…

Last Days’ Prophecy Unfolding

April 10, 2022 by  
Filed under Featured, Missions, News

“Israel has to be reborn as the country. Check. Jews have to be coming back en masse and resettling here. Check. Jews have to rebuild the ancient ruins. Check. They have to make modern Israel prosperous. Check. And they have to be living securely in the land,”
04:00 Invasion toward ISRAEL (Rev. 12)
06:00 The mark (Rev. 13)
06:27 10 kings (Rev. 17:12)
06:44 Ross of Magago (Ezek. 38 & 39)
07:35 War (Rev. 19:19)
08:33 Do not damage the oil and the wine (Rev. 6:6)
09:00 China (Rev.16:12–16)
14:25 World War 3 (Rev. 19:19)
14:45 Chemical weapons (Rev. 9)
15:00 to the end – America NOT in Biblical prophecy
https://www.jpost.com/christianworld/article-702069

Maintaining Internal Motivation in Midst of Pandemic

April 1, 2022 by  
Filed under Featured, Missions, News

by Kathryn N. Donev, LPC/MSHP, NCC
The following are some highlights to encourage you this new year in midst of the uncertainty of a global pandemic with 1) Product Placement, 2) Cognitive Dissonance, and 3) Mass Formation Psychosis surrounding us daily.

Motivation has been explored from the beginning of time. Questions such as “What is motivation?” and “How can one become motivated?” continue to be discussed and analyzed. Many theories of how to provoke individuals exist. Some authorities feel that the key is the use of a reward system in which an individual is enticed to act by an external motivator. Conversely, other experts believe in the concept of “self-talk” where one simply talks positively to become inspired. Scholars continue to debate the sources of motivation and it has been described in a variety of ways. From a Christian perspective, motivation can be defined as occurring when an individual is convinced of the appropriateness and urgency of goals, to the degree that he or she is driven not from without, but from within to act and continues to act in order to reach these goals, despite what others do or think.

In order to understand motivation, one must be aware of its sources. These include those that arise from within oneself and those that derive from external factors. One of the main sources of external motivation is financial incentives. Other external motivators include social pressure as well as magnetic personalities; those that have the ability to attract individuals who may fail to consider the implications of becoming enticed. External motivators inspire individuals to act first and think later. In such cases, one is solely moved by outside incentive. Alternatively, individuals may experience genuine motivation, which comes from within oneself.

Before addressing how to become genuinely motivated, a further distinction must be made between “internal” and “external” motivation. Internal motivation is what the author considers to be true motivation due to it being internally generated and not externally stimulated. Excitement occurs based on personal interest or passion. It is grounded on a decision to identify with that task, resulting in belongingness and not because of any external incentive.

On the other hand, the author views external motivation as an artificial stimulus. It is fake in the sense that it produces emotional stimulation, which may lead to excitement without creating an awareness of the true source of such feelings. In other words, support or positive reinforcement from others may create a feeling towards action, which may dissipate once the peripheral source is removed. External motivation is based on outside or perhaps selfish incentives. One may ask the question, “What is in it for me?” External motivation causes one to become consumed with personal rewards, rather than focusing on the goal at hand. Nevertheless, it is important to note that in the early stages of motivation, people may need emotional encouragement from others in order to promote action. However, individuals are not truly motivated as defined above, unless their actions are produced by internal motives regardless of the presence of support from others.

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