From Voicu and Ana Marian | Serving in Romania
We immigrated to the US from communist Romania in the late 70s, in search of “the good life.” In our atheistic view, that meant abundance of things and the freedom to do what we wanted. Upon arriving in Ohio, we came in contact with God’s people through the Evangelical Friends Church. They embodied the love of Jesus and gave us a taste of “the blessed life.” In the year 2000 we returned to our people with a new passion: to proclaim the gospel to the lost.
Starting out in the city of Sibiu, we ministered to orphaned and abandoned girls, and some of those became Christians and part of our family. Though no longer children, they continue to bring a special spark to our holidays.
God enlarged our vision into teaching children in the public school. Through English and Woodworking classes we met some great kids, gained favor with their parents and soon started to do Christian camps. These were followed by weekly youth meetings, and over the years many confessed Jesus as Savior. We continue to work in the villages of Orlat and Gura Raului.
In the Acorn Shop, Voicu teaches woodworking to junior high boys. More than woodworking, they learn how to become real men, according to the Bible. As we’ve done many times in the past, this year for Thanksgiving we invited students for a special meal and celebration. The American history account was used as platform for a better lesson: Gratitude as a Way of Life. And this Christmas season we read about the birth of Jesus with several of our students, and sang, “O Come Let Us Adore Him.”
We’ve witnessed great changes, especially since Romania became part of the EU in 2007. With open borders and boundless digital access, in flooded “the good life,” and with it, plenty of evil. Having come to know these children, we’ve grown to love them deeply. Their life stories have become part of ours, and it’s quite painful to see some harden their hearts when they become adults. The Lord reminds us that our purpose here is not to change people, but to live for Him. “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever.” (Heb.13:8) He remains faithful and he deserves all the glory!
A recent picture, for those who’ve never met the Marians: Ana and Voicu, with son John (Sibiu, Romania) and daughter Christina (Columbus, OH).
- That we’d keep proclaiming the gospel and loving people as unto the Lord.
- For the Word sown through the years to bear fruit, and God to call workers into the harvest (now and after our retirement).
- For wisdom as we plan weekly activities, God’s leading for the future, spring and, summer ministries.