In addition to connecting with long-time friends, rekindling memories of decades or two ago, we also ran into a family from Kosice. Though we had met before when Shane had preached at a Roma church in Slovakia, this gave us an opportunity to sit together in their apartment as we shared refreshments, our testimonies and prayer so we could get to know each other better. As Dezko described himself he said, "We Roma are quick to accept Jesus . . . but then we need someone to always encourage us in our faith." That wonderful night in Stuttgart was a time of encouragement for us all. New friendships were made which will last.
With our long-time friends, we visited Christmas markets in Stuttgart, Esslingen, Munich, and Bad Tolz. That is a lot of Christmas markets! We enjoyed the seasonal punch, bratwurst, and toasted nuts. And the people! It was grand. Yet, it was the conversations with friends as we strolled through the markets, enjoying the rooftops of the booths especially, which were life-giving and provided lasting memories.
Gathering with family and friends during this busy holiday season, it is an opportunity for us all to find ways of encouraging each other in our faith. As you gather with family and friends to observe the holiday season, encourage one another. Look up for fanciful rooftops and hold tight to those around you.
As part of this season of giving, we encourage you to consider a special gift in support of life-changing ministries around the world. You can give to the Offering for Global Missions or to a specific ministry you can find in the CBF Gift Catalog.