Monday, November 15, 2010

a big event

 for a while now I've been wanting to get the choir from Calvary Budapest to come to Szeged to preform a concert.  this summer I talked with the choir director, Mark Zeeman, about the possibility of them coming down to preform in Szeged. He said they'd love to it really just depended on us. for one reason or another we weren't able to make any progress.
   
   about a month ago Mark called to let me know they will be preforming in a city about 100km from us in December & if we'd still like them to come. I said yes & myself & the church elders began looking for venues in Szeged that would accommodate the performance of the 90 person "travel choir" (the actual size of the choir is 200+) after looking at a couple places the Lord set things up with a friend of mine who knows someone at the local community center. After talking with her they made us a great offer to rent a hall that can seat 600 people. 

   on December 12th, we'll be hosting the Golgota Gospel Choir (www.golgotagospelkorus.hu) for the first, of what I hope, to be an annual Christmas concert. 

   I, and the church elders, believe this will be a great way to get the message of the Gospel out during the Christmas season. 

  We're really pushing "word of mouth" advertising for this event as I believe it's the best advertising. God has given us free advertising in a large, local internet portal through a church member who writes for this internet paper. 

  So we're excited about lifting up the name of Jesus & seeing what He will do at this event.

  Please join with us in prayer 
   - that the hall for 600 people would pack out.
   - that those who come who don't know Jesus would come to know Him at this concert.
   - that myself & the elders would have wisdom in all the stages of the planning.

 For Jesus' fame,

 Kyle

p.s. if you're in Szeged & need tickets (1500Ft. per person), just shoot me an e-mail!!

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

the church in Hungary

last week I was informed of some very startling news about what the government here in Hungary wants to do about churches. In 1990 after communism fell, the government enacted "religious freedom" laws which allowed the establishment & legal registration of churches here in Hungary.  In 1995 Calvary Chapel became an officially recognized church here in Hungary. It was in 2001 when Calvary Szeged became a legally recognized local church from the national Calvary Chapel. This legal status that Calvary has nationally has allowed the church to officially invite foreign nationals to work as missionaries and this helped in applying for visas to stay / minister in Hungary. Calvary Chapel Bible College Europe received accreditation this past spring & now offers a BA in Theology.  As a legally recognized church people are able to offer 1% of their income to a church when they file their taxes every year.

the current government (which was elected in the spring) proposed a new law last week regarding the freedom of religion & churches. The government will require every church to re-register with a council they will set up which will determine what is a church or not.  Only those churches which have 10,000 members or those historical churches will be allowed to remain as churches.  Because the current government has a 2/3 majority they have the power to change any & all laws they want including ones about religious freedom. The current government coalition is strongly supported by the Catholic church who has a web site that lists pretty much every church that isn't Catholic as a cult.

this proposal is to be put before the Parliament either latter this year or early next year. Should it pass, Calvary Chapel Hungary would lose it's legal status. We'd no long be able to receive people's tax deductible donations, the accreditation of the Bible College would be lost, and Calvary would not receive any government funding for any ministries (i.e. soup kitchens).  What's probably the worst is that people following Jesus in "small" churches like Calvary Chapel would not be protected with the same religious freedoms which they're protected with now.

at the moment those who are involved in the legal aspects of the church are prayerfully considering what steps we are to take. Obviously we are encouraging everyone to pray that God would turn the hearts of the politicians that they would vote against this law which would stifle religious freedom.

please join us in praying for the church here in Hungary!

in His service,

Kyle

Monday, September 6, 2010

time to study

  one of the things I've always found a little funny is that God has called me to pastor a church in a city where people to come to get an education and in a country where so much depends on what kind of degree you have. When I moved to Hungary 15 years ago, I planned on going back to California after a year and continue college. Obviously that didn't happen. a few times over the years, I've looked into going back to school but for one reason or another nothing ever came of it. Until now! The spring Calvary Chapel Bible College Europe (here in Hungary) was accredited as a seminary and this fall has begun to offer a 3 year program which will end with a BA in Theology.
  since a desire of mine has been to go back to school and get a degree this opportunity was just too good to pass up. so I've enrolled and am now officially a student at CCBCE (www.ccbce.com). Lord willing in 3 years, I'll have a BA in Theology which means A LOT to people here in Hungary. One of the first questions I get from people is "what school did you go to?"
  It seems that I will be able to get some credit for "life experience" but that in no way means that there is no work involved in my studies. For the next 3 years I will need to learn to really discipline the way I use my time as there are many lectures I need to listen to, books to read, and reports to write. Being a husband & daddy, the pastor of a church, working part time, and now taking on college classes will be a lot but I believe by the grace of God I will be successful & what means a lot is Odi is very supportive of my wanting to get a degree (since she already has a Masters in English).
 as you know, any school has a price & this is no different. as of right now I don't know what the exact costs will be for me in the end but any extra expense right now is more than we plan for, so if you would prayerfully consider supporting my studies there is a link on the left column of blog where which you may donate funds to us via Calvary Chapel Costa Mesa.
 I'd also greatly appreciate pray for strength that I could do all things well & that I'd be wise in scheduling my time.

 thanks!

 kyle

Thursday, August 12, 2010

a long day

this last Sunday was a LONG day for myself & one of the church elders Norbi. I was invited to preach at a gypsy church in Hajdúhadház in northeastern Hungary. It's about 35km from Nyíregyháza. The pastor of the Calvary in Nyíregyháza gave his life to Jesus & grew in the Lord at Calvary Szeged. A couple of years ago, the Lord took him & his wife there as he got a job there & she was going to University in Debrecen. Since then, because of the economy, he lost his job, but this has opened the door for him to take over the church in Nyíregyháza. Calvary Szeged has been supporting Gábor & his wife for about 6 months now. We're very excited about what God is doing in & through them.
 since I was invited to preach in Hajdúhadház, I thought it would be good to see Gábor & the church in Nyíregyháza.
 so Sunday morning Norbi & I left at 5am to make sure we got to Nyíregyháza in time for the morning service at 10am (we made it there by 8:45am by the grace of God).  I had a wonderful time preaching about living a life of service for Jesus. After the service they had a church lunch that we were blessed to take part in.
 around 2pm we left for Hajdúhadház. When we got there we went to the pastors house for some coffee & pre-church fellowship. This was the first time I'd met the pastor. One of his foster daughters came to church here in Szeged for a while (this is how I got the invite).
 the afternoon evangelism service began at 4pm. I had never been to a Pentecostal service before so I had no idea what to expect. the service was long (2 1/2 hours) but a really blessed time to worship Jesus with people from another "tribe".  what was great is that myself & the pastor, András, prayed with 9 people to receive Jesus, 5 of them were little kids.
 after dinner at pastor András' house, we headed on home. We got back around 11pm.
 so it was 19 hours, 830km (500 miles), 2 services, 9 new Christians. it was a GOOD day.

worship in Hajdúhadház
Add caption
Pastor András

Thursday, August 5, 2010

2010 summer update

Hi,

 let me tell you a little about what's been going on with us & with the ministry here in Szeged.

 personal
 we're totally loving being parents & so blessed that the Lord has given us a wonderful daughter in Zara. We can't believe on September 5th she'll be a year old!  

 every August there is a missions conference at the Calvary Chapel Conference Center in Austria (a.k.a."The Castle") & we haven't been able to go for years but this year the Lord has graciously provided for us to go through Calvary Chapel Old Bridge. We're so looking forward to having a week to just get refreshed in the Lord & fellowship with many people we haven't seen in years!  Zara has been on a long flight before but this will be an adventure since it's about an 8 hour drive from Szeged.

  I'm hoping in the fall to enroll in the Calvary Chapel Bible College Europe's accredited Bachelor of Theology program. As you might know Calvary Chapel Bible College Europe was accredited by the Hungarian government this past spring & this fall will begin offering a BA in Theology. When I first moved to Hungary I thought, "I'll come for 1 year & then go back & finish college". Well the Lord had other plans but now this is an open door in front of me & I'd like to take it. 

 for more updates & goings on with our family, please check out our blog @ www.kyleodi.blogspot.com
 or follow us on twitter @kyleinszeged

  ministry

 summer is usually our "down" time at church as many of the students go home & people go on vacation. This year has been different. We've seen people start coming to church over the summer. More "Szeged" people. So we're really blessed by that. We're especially thankful for 2 new families & some singles that are coming regularly.  
 at the end of June we had our annual summer conference in Vajta. Pastor Terry Walker from CC Living Word & Pastor Justin Southwick from Mosaic Community Church in Phoenix, AZ  came over to teach us from God's Word. It was a very encouraging & challenging week for all who attended. We were encouraged by Pastor Terry to stand in Jesus till the end & by Pastor Justin to live as missionaries for Jesus in the world now. this year we took 35 people to the conference.
 I was personally very encouraged at the conference by a couple people from towns near Vajta. They came and told me that they regularly download our services or listen live. We've had some technical hang ups recently as the guy who was doing our website moved back to his home down, so we're kind of lacking in that area at the moment but praying for God to raise someone up with the skills to keep our website up to date.
 I've been blessed by a lot of invitations to speak at different churches & events. This weekend I'll be traveling to northeastern Hungary to teach Sunday morning at Calvary Nyiregyhaza. Gabor, the pastor, got saved & grew at CC Szeged, then a couple  years ago finished college and get a job up there. Since then, because of the economy, he lost his job. At the same time, God raised him up to take over that church.  So I will be going to visit him & teach there. Then in the afternoon I will be speaking at a Gypsy church in Hadjuhadhaz. The daughter of the pastor came to our church a few times while in Szeged & they extended me an invitation to come preach. I'm excited about that!  While I'm gone on Sunday, I've asked the Pentecostal pastor to preach for me as they don't have a Sunday morning service. He's a really great, humble man of God & I'm excited to have him preach for me.
  Next week I'll be speaking at an outreach event for a new Calvary Chapel in Kiskunmajsa (about 30 miles from Szeged). And the first weekend in September I'll be ministering to the leadership of another church here in Szeged. I'm excited about these opportunities to tell people about Jesus!
  September will be upon us before we know it & September for us is really the beginning of our "season". We're going to start out the school year by doing a teaching series called "ask anything".  at the end of last school year / beginning of summer I asked people to submit questions and we'd do a teaching series in the fall. Right now I'm going to take 3 weeks & deal with the 3 topics that came in. 1. The Trinity. 2. the reliability of the Bible. 3. What do Biblical relationships look like.  After that we're going to go through the Gospel of John on Sunday mornings, examining the Word that became flesh. On Wednesdays we are continuing our journey through the Bible. We should finish Jeremiah by the middle of September, then Lamentations & Ezekiel, and on & on we will go by the grace of God.
 also this fall, we hope to send a carload of people to minister in Bosnia along with Laci Nemeth & some of the brethren from Southern Budapest Calvary Chapel. One of our elders was there a couple months ago & we are hoping to give people a bigger vision for the work of God through a missions trip like this.
 we do still want to get an outreach team over this fall or early winter, maybe to do some English teaching at schools to reach out to youth & we're looking into what it would practically take to get the Golgota Gospel Choir from Budapest down here for a concert.
 Women's fellowship is starting up again this month & we will start a men's fellowship in September. We are also looking to start a married couples fellowship to encourage married couples as we know Satan wants to destroy marriages. 
  so there's a lot going on & we're excited about what Jesus is going to do in this next season in Szeged!
  thank you for your continued prayers & financial support for our family & ministry!

  For Jesus' fame!

 Kyle, Odi & Zara

prayer requests

 - for continued financial provision for us. This last year has been difficult as Odi is not working any more (and we'd like to keep it  
   that way) so she can have a homeward focus. (there is a link on our blog for those who would like to financially support us)
 - for CC Szeged to really catch the vision to be on mission for Jesus in Szeged.
 - for people to come to know Jesus & get plugged into the church
 - for God to raise up people to serve in the church. (children's ministry, sound ministry, internet ministry)
 - that women's, men's & married couples fellowships would be a real time of connection & growth for all involved.
 - for grace & anointing to preach & teach God's Word clearly, whether it be in Szeged or other places God gives opportunity to 
   preach.
 - for God's leading about a possible missions trip to Bosnia in the fall
 - for God to open the doors & provide if we're to host an outreach concert with the Golgota Gospel Choir. 

Sunday, July 11, 2010

zara's dedication

a couple of weeks ago at our annual summer conference for the church, we asked a good friend of ours, Laci Németh, to dedicate Zara to the Lord. We see a Biblical precedence for this, as Jesus was taken to the Temple in Luke 2 to be dedicated to the Lord. This "ceremony" is simply a time of us giving thanks to the Lord for the blessing of our daughter.

"Behold, children are a heritage from the LORD, the fruit of the womb a reward."
(Psalm 127:3 ESV)







Thursday, May 13, 2010

church building

as many of you know, we as a church have been praying about looking for a new church building as the place where we are now (and have been for the past 8 years) is just becoming to expensive for us. In March I told our landlord of the situation and we began negotiations about a decrease in rent. at first he agreed then wanted to change things up a little bit, which we weren't comfortable with, and then at the beginning of this month I told him that we are giving him 3 months notice and we're going to be leaving. Well, when he heard that, he immediately began to say that he doesn't want to lose us and that if it's going to help us stay there then he will decrease the rent if we sign a 6 month extension, which would take us to June 2011. after much prayer, thought and seeking new places, the elders & I agree that the best thing for us would be to stay where we're at and the money we save now during the summer to put it away for the winter when we have to heat.

so I'm glad we're staying cause we're "established" here, now we're just going to continue to trust our generous Lord to take care of all the needs of His church.

Monday, April 19, 2010

10 years

this April is the 10 year anniversary of be being the pastor of Calvary Szeged. was a ready to pastor a church at the age of 23, probably not. but then again, it's hard to say if a man is ever ready to pastor God's people. the past 10 years has been an adventure to say the least.

yesterday at church I was greatly surprised that the church had been secretly organizing a surprise party for me to celebrate this occasion. it started by ordering pizzas for everyone, then the elders showed a slide show of the past 10 years. it really struck me how many people I've been honored to server and minister to. then they surprised me by having our good friends, Laci & Keri Németh come down from Budapest.

then the event culminated with a treasure hunt, after 3 clues, I was lead back to the pulpit where there was a gift for me. it appeared to be a book, when I opened it up and opened the book, much to my surprise there was an iphone in it. needless to say, I was completely taken back by this.

to see the love and generosity that the church has for me, completely humbles me & makes me so proud to teach & pastor the wonderful people of Calvary Szeged.

so I'm a blessed man and now I've got an iphone, look out!!

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

live from New York.........


for the first time ever, I'm in NY. I'm on my way back to Hungary after spending a week with my Dad in CA. I can't wait home to my girls, "skypeing" with them has been great but it's not the real thing.

my trip to CA was a surprise for my Dad. and was he surprised. I went to help him with some stuff & just to spend some time with him as his health isn't the best. over the course of the week we had a lot of good conversations not only about the near future and options for him but also about eternity. I got my Dad a Bible last week and he's gonna read a chapter a day in the hopes that "it'll help him think clearly". I know the Word of God will do it's work in His life.

I also gave my Dad a book I just read call "The Prodigal God" by Timothy Keller. It was given to me when we were in CA in January by Justin Southwick & it has really helped me to see the parable of the "prodigal son" in a whole different way. I gave it to my Dad to help him see the great love that God has for him in that He gave His Son for us. The parable isn't only about the "younger son" being lost, it's about the older son being lost too, but in a different way. But more than that, it's a book about God who, recklessly & extravagantly, spends all to show us His love & bring us to His feast. I highly recommend this book to all.

all in all the trip to spend time with my Dad was worth it, I pray there would be lasting fruit from it.

now it's time to get back to my beautiful family in Hungary & get ready to celebrate the most joyous day of the year this Sunday as we celebrate that Jesus is alive!!

Jesus is alive. anything is possible!

for Him!

kyle

Saturday, March 6, 2010

2010 winter / spring update

we'd like to share with you briefly some things that have been going on here in our lives & the life of Calvary Szeged over the past few months.

church news

- last weekend we hosted a 1 day "winter conference" where we invited the Southern Budapest Calvary & a fellowship from Kiskunmajsa which is seeking to affiliate with Calvary here in Hungary. our theme was the role & the mission of the church in the modern world. many people expressed that they left encouraged and challenged.
- we continue to be blessed my our "multi-national" worship team on Sunday mornings. Our worship team is made up of 1 Hungarian, 1 Romanian, 3 Nigerians & 2 Indians, it's a real reflection of our church & our city, as Szeged is filled with many students from all over the world who come here to study or do research. It's a blessing that they are singing in Hungarian & English, so everyone who joins us on Sundays can worship Jesus.
- also our small group Bible study continues to be a blessing to those who attend on Friday nights as they have the opportunity to open up to each other a lot more.
- in the midst of the current world economic crisis, we've started a food pantry at our church to help those in need with some food basics. this ministry is just getting off the ground but we hope that it will be an effective way to help minister to practical needs people have as many people are losing their jobs or taking a drastic cut in pay.
- because many people's work situation has changed, the giving in our church has dropped drastically, to the point where we are praying about where Jesus would lead us. I recently talked with our church landlord and in principle he's agreed to a $130 reduction in rent. there are still a couple of details that we need to work out. we've been in our current facility for almost 8 years and he really doesn't want to lose us especially in this economy. In spite of this "good news" with him, we are still going to be looking and praying if there might not be a better place for the church to meet. so please join us in prayer about this situation.
- the elders & I have been meeting every Monday morning for prayer and it's been good for all involved as we get more time to seek Jesus' heart for the church.
- in today's local paper I read an article that the wait lists for parents to get their kids into a pre-school is over 18 months in some places but with an average of about 12 months. there is a great need for pre-schools here in Szeged & this is something we still want to do, so we will be pursuing this opportunity in the future, even though last year the city said they don't have a place for us to operate a pre-school, we're gonna keep seeking, keep asking, and keep knocking & see what Jesus does!

family news
- yesterday (March 5th) Zara turned 6 months old. it's amazing how time has flown! she brings so much joy to our lives every single day & we are so thankful that so many of you prayed for her over the years.
- late winter, early spring celebrates 2 milestones for me (Kyle), February 21st was my 15 year anniversary here in Hungary (I thought I was only coming for 1 year but God had different plans) and April celebrates my 10 year anniversary as the pastor of CC Szeged. I know I haven't done everything right, but Jesus has been so gracious to us & the church over the years. I think the thing that blesses me the most is that now in Hungary there are 2 Calvary Chapels that are being pastored by men who came out of CC Szeged. We are humbled and honored that Jesus would use us in His church to bless & build up His people. We look forward to whatever Jesus has for us in the future.
- Odi recently restarted the women's fellowship, with more of an emphasis on fellowship, prayer & sharing life together.
- again, the economic crisis has hit us very hard as far as our support goes. so please pray that the Lord would either raise more support for us or provide more opportunities for work. For those interested in supporting us financially, there is a link on our blog (www.kyleodi.blogspot.com) where you can give a tax deductible donation through Calvary Chapel Costa Mesa. you just need to scroll down on the drop down tab to find my name and fill out the rest.

prayer requests

- for continued wisdom for Kyle to lead the church.
- for Jesus' direction in where we should go as a church, if we should even go at all.
- for open doors to open & operate a pre-school here in Szeged.
- for financial provision for both the church & us personally.
- for continued strength & health in our family.

for Jesus' fame,

kyle, odi & zara

Sunday, February 21, 2010

it's been a long time

15 years ago today, I arrived in Hungary with my friend PJ. we came to Baja to help in the Calvary Chapel there. for both of us it was a 1 year commitment. had you asked me at that time how long I'll be in Hungary, I probably would have told you 1 year, maybe 2. today I'm celebrating 15 years of serving Jesus as a missionary / pastor here in Hungary. it's been an adventure, learning another language and culture. the best thing that has happened is that Jesus gave me the most amazing woman to be my wife & now blessed our home with a beautiful daughter.

what the next 15 years will bring, I have no idea, but whatever happens me & my house will follow Jesus. cause following Jesus is a journey, not an arrival.


to all those reading this, thank you. thank you for not forgetting about me in the past 15 years & thank you for joining with us as me & my family serve Jesus here in Szeged.

for Jesus' fame

kyle

Friday, February 12, 2010

baby swimming

zara's pediatrician recommend that we take her to baby swimming to help in her development. so yesterday was our first baby swimming and it seems that zara liked it. here's some video video

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

update on baby Felicia

for all you who are praying for Felicia, God is answering. so keep praying!
here's an update on her condition:

Sunday, January 24, 2010

friends in need

our friends, who are missionaries in Eger, just had a baby girl on Friday but she is in critical condition. please check out their blog & pray for the life of their precious daughter. http://nickandrosemary.blogspot.com/

thanks.

Saturday, January 9, 2010

home sweet home

after a long day of travel, we made it home. it was a great trip. it started in LA when we we're moved into business class cause the flight to Amsterdam was oversold, so we made the "sacrifice" to let more people on the plane! now that is the way to fly. Zara did great on the flight, again!! she slept about 7 1/2 hours straight, so we both had time to rest. hopefully we won't be hit with jet-lag.

anyways we were welcome home by our wonderful neighbors who had dinner ready for us and also bought us a small Christmas tree and decorated it. we've got the best neighbors in the world!!

well time to keep unpacking!!

Monday, January 4, 2010

the good, the bad, and the ugly


no the good, the bad and the ugly isn't a description of this picture, I think this is how I'd summarize our trip here to California. it's been all of those things.

the good.... our first christmas with zara. blessed beyond words by the fellowship, care, a love of the saints. spending time with family.

the bad.... as with every trip, no matter how long or short, there never seems to be enough time to do all we want to do or see everyone. hopefully our next trip won't be in the too distant future, so we can come back and see people we didn't get to.

the ugly... this will go down as a memorable trip. it got ugly when I caught a stomach flu and was out for 48 hours. and got even uglier when my mom fell on the stairs at my aunt's house and broke her foot and shoulder. :-(

with that said and 3 days left of our trip. we're ready to get back to the comfort of our own home.

time to start packing
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