From a Macedonian evangelical leader
NOTE: OW has added section headers, and made slight (edits) for clarity.
Locked down and locked in
Blessings and greetings from Macedonia. August is mostly a month in which not many things are happening in the churches because many of the believers are going to Holidays, so mainly (a) more relaxed time.
The situation with the Corona has not changed much. Still the number of infected people with the virus is big. It is about 12% of the people that are tested (who) are positive with the virus. Because of that, we as Macedonians can travel only to Albania and Turkey [in Turkey with plane]. Until (a) few days ago we could travel to Serbia, but not now without negative PCR test.
In Macedonia everybody can enter, but we cannot go out of the country. All of this causes a feeling that we are closed country.
Blessings and challenges for the Church and its leaders
It is good, the fact that the number of people that are coming (into) the church is increasing. Even though it is a small number, we are still trying to reach the amount of 40-50% of the believers that come to the service in normal times. But from the other hand, our capacity with the new standards is somewhere around this number because we don’t have enough space.
It is difficult that many of the people don’t come to church because they are cautious or afraid, and we as leaders can’t go to their homes to visit them because of the corona. And quite a lot of our believers are coming from mixed families where not all of them are believers and this creates even more difficult situation.
We are aware (of) the fact that autumn and winter will come soon. We don’t know how things will develop, because then we will not be able to have services with open windows and doors, and many people that are sitting in our yards outside will not be able to do that. That is why in (late) August we have a Pastors’ meeting to discuss about the guidelines for the future period.
Also there is a big probability that the pandemic will have another wave, and a possible danger that the season flu and COVID19 will meet. The health institutions are saying that there might be quarantines again, restrictions of the public gathering, or the public gatherings might be forbidden. This will influence (our) work.
Pray for :
- God to give wisdom to the leaders, what to do with the churches.
- The enthusiasm and joy to remain in the work of all the believers.
- A government to be established in Macedonia. (OW note: the country has been without a functioning government since 2015.)
- The brothers and sisters that have big fear from the Corona and still don’t leave their homes because of the Corona, to have more courage.