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Category Archives: Russia: Volga District

Now three days closer to happiness.

A union between a man and a woman has its destination in creating harmony in relations through mutual perfection of both characters, with an intent to bring spiritual and moral image to this world («Victory of love»).

Michail Telepov and Nadegda Telepova «the ABC of family».

 

There are few people left believing in true love in this world full of betrayals, divorces and lies. Love can be only found in Hollywood movies and Mexican series. Unfortunately, lives of so many people now are driven by money, power and sex.

But there are still people who hope to meet their love, to create family, to get older together. Such kind of people became audience of a seminar that took place in Samara United Methodist Church. The name of it speaks for itself “How to find your other half and live with him or her happily the rest of your lives”.

Michail Telepov and Nadegda Telepova were our invited lecturers.To start with, they are a christian family who live together for 29 years and now have three children and two grandchildren. Secondly, they are professional psychologists with degrees: Dr. Telepova and PhD Telepov, who has been working in the field of family psychology since 1993. They are consultants at  international organisation ACET (Aids Care Education Training), profess in “Centre of Study Development”, the city of Samara. The couple is also known for publishing their books in premarital and marital relations.

The seminar was held three evenings, during which we enjoyed lectures, asked questions, received personal consultations, had follow-up conversations nad informal time with tea and biscuits.

A lecture of Michail and Nadegda is always a lively and interesting monologue of a lecturer in two persons – spouses finish each other’s sentences, it seems that they read each other’s minds. The material is brilliantly and dynamically presented with good humour and examples from personal life. Amaizingly, it is was not “milk-and-water ”, everything was superbly prepared  and sticks to the topic.

The first day of our course went under the name of “Marriage Design” and was devoted to the search of a partner. Michail and Nadegda helped the audience to realize that most commonly people enter marriage with deep selfish aspirations – “let us love ME together”. We have learnt that the genuine intention of marriage is “creating harmony in relations through mutual perfection of both characters, with an intent to bring spiritual and moral image to this world”. A complicated sentence which says about self-giving love, respect, creation, testimony to the world.

It is not that hard to find a life partner as it seems. According to Nadegda and Michail it  should be a person of opposite sex, corresponding with these three requirements:

  • He or she must be single;
  • He or she must not be your relative;
  • Both of you should have the same religion, the same spiritual and moral principles.

Yes, it is that simple. Other wishes concerning height, weight, nose shape, eye colour, car model, cooking and other abilities are our ambitions, which we can and should adjust.

A “triangle of love” was also under consideration this day. According to psychologists, it has three verteces: responsibilities (marriage), friendship and sex. More detailed information about “entering” each vertex of the triangle you can find in Telepov’s book “The ABC of family”.

Finishing the first lecture professors gave practical advice of building up premarital relations.

The second evening was dedicated to the topic of differences between men and women. These differences often become barriers on the way to healthy relations. Balks turn up on physiological, psychological and spiritual levels. One should know about them and be able to identify. The recommended steps on overcoming these issues are as follows:

Opening yourself before your partner (with an aim to get to know each other);

Sense of humor;

A willed decision to accept each other as you are.

During the third lecture Michail and Nadegda told about achieving family happiness. To do this a couple should get their own family system with close personal and sexual relations. As it turned out, that is the true meaning of a Scripture verse “For this reason a man will leave his farther and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh. So they are no longer two, but one flesh.”(Mark 10:7-8) These lines include three necessary aspects of building happiness.

To form the family system a family should to have physical (territorial), financial and social-emotional independence.

To fulfill the second point on the way to a happy marriage (i.e. creating close personal relations) the couple is to:

Realize the need in each other

Be open and avoid secrets

Interact with each other

Constantly grow faithfulness and respect.

Plasticine was used to illustrate the example of complete unity. If we mix green and red pieces we will get a brown one and it is no longer possible to separate them. But if viewed closer, red and green lines can be noticed. Spouses should be connected firmly, intimately, inseparably, though not dissolve, but remain bright full-value individuals. Unity should take place on every level:

Body,

Spirit,

Soul.

Only then the harmony and true happiness of marriage may be achieved.

All that might seem to be unnecessary “scientific mess”. But personally I think , one can get down to this theoretical family “mess” in a positive sense and create a happy marriage everyone is dreaming of. A harmonic marriage that, unfortunately, is a rear case nowadays. The marriage that was bethought and designed by God when He created mankind “male and female he created them”. (Genesis 1:27).

 

Alexandra Voronova

Samara UMC

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Posted by on November 21, 2012 in Russia: Volga District

 

“Methodist women” group of Samara UMC

“Methodist women” group of Samara UMC gave a workshop on Prayer-blanket making for sisters of Novokujbyshevsk UMC. Women for several years have been making and sewing blankets, after finishing them, “Methodist women” pray over these blankets and then present the blankets to children, elders and ministers of the church.Apart from that,  we usually make different handcraftson our workshops , which are then sold on our annual Christmas charity fair, the money is used then for charitable uses.

Pastor Olga Ganina, Samara UMC

 
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Posted by on September 29, 2012 in Mission Mosaic, Russia: Volga District

 

New members of Samara UMC

Imagine. A typical Sunday morning. Church service. Seven people are being initiated into church members. The pastor is reading the mass, the candidates are responding and the audience is echoing them. Nothing special, right?

Wrong. On the contrary, that is the most wonderful, the most significant day of the week – Sunday. That is the day of the Lord. The day of worship, the day of glory. And even more important has that day become for Samara UMC because it had been opening its warm embrace to the new brothers and sisters. On that day 7 people announced their commitment as members of the church.

What does it mean? It means that the church has become 7 times richer: with 7 pairs of hands willing to do good in the name of God, with 7 pairs of legs running to help those in need, with 7 hearts lit up by the Holy Spirit and with an endless number of priceless gifts that will be used to keep the church flourishing and welcoming new people.

“Too idealistic” – you might say. Maybe, in a way. It may be that not all members and not always contribute their material gifts to the church, not all the time are their hands busy with serving the others but more often are they busy with secular things at work, at home and by the end of the day too tired to rise up to something more. Sometimes our hearts are just not yet fully open to God and filled with His Holy Spirit. Sometimes our gifts have not yet been revealed to us. But let us not focus on our flaws and misfortunes as that is not the way the Lord sees us. For He sees us what we are in perspective, the way He has meant us to become: faithful, loving, strong, sympathetic, ready to give and sacrifice, humble and obedient.

These and many more are the things our new members will be learning to do and understand.

And I do hope that our congregation will accept these new people as they are, as they have been created by our Lord and will become for these people a home, a model of faith, love and service.

Congratulations to the new members of Samara UMC: Sergey Shilling, Kseniya Shilling, Elena Lipatova, Elena Senatorova, Maxim Kvyatkovskiy, Aleksey Voronov and Sergei Kostrov!

The article written by Sasha Voronova

Translation of Maria Tighina

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Annual Conference Central Russia 2012

Traditionally, in the end of June there was Annual Conference of
Central Russia in the House of Methodist, Moscow. The meeting gathered
pastors, deacons and leaders from three districts. The through-passing
topic was the words of Apostle Paul addressing Philippians : “Let us
live up” (Philip. 3:16). Members of the conference took part in
discussions about the improving the quality of ministry, questions of
evangelization and prospects of churchs’ growth.  A joyful event of
the Conference was introduction to ministry our beloved brother in
Christ, member of Samara UMC, Rakhmankulov Artur, who has graduated
EUMC Seminary this year.
Apart from that, Eugeniy Stambrovkiy was appointed as a second pastor
in Otradnyj UMC, Vladislav Hegay as a pastor in Novokujbyshevsk and
Eduard Davidson became ordained deacon in Saratov UMC. Three more
devoted leaders in Volga District!
However, there was a sad moment, too. Members of Annual Conference of
Central Russia said goodbye to Bishop Hans Vaxby, who has been leading
Russian UMC for the last 8 years and now leaves and takes
well-deserved rest. Pastors and leaders who worked with Hans in one
team warmly thanked him and blessed him for future acts in Christ
Jesus. No matter how sorrow it was to say goodbye to our dear Hans, we
remember this Conference as a blessed time of communication when
leaders and pastors gathered in service, prayers and praising God’s
glory.
Alexey Voronov
Samara UMC

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Volga District-Saratov UMC today

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International Women’s Day prayer in Samara

Samara United Methodist Church has been taking part in the for many years. This year, traditionally, we gathered in St. George’s church to pray for women of Malaysia. The participating brothers and sisters are from Methodist, Lutheran, Catholic and other churches. The leaders were brightly dressed. They told us about the country, its political and social structure. We were shown videos about people’s life, their problems and joys. We all prayed a lot, sang christian hymns, listened to the sermon of Natalia Prokhorova – Superintendent of Methodist church. Moreover, we gathered offerings for the women of Malaysia and then had dinner where people from different churches came to eat Malaysian food together and to have a peaceful communication. That wonderful tradition helps to live in peace and joy with Christians of other denominations, it makes us closer and helps to understand each other. We share joyful moments, problems and future plans. The pastors have decided to have gathered summer prayer meetings outdoors, in the country – on the other side of the river Volga.
See you next time!
Pastor Olga Ganina, Samara UMC

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UMC Otradny,Volga District

UMC in Otradny, Samara region, start 2012 with joy and thanks to Lord. We start
Spring Annual Conference, 4 March, we add up last ear.
How many blessings we so and feel on our lives. How many souls were saved by Jesus Christ and thru His Love. With us rejoice all angels like His words telling Luke 15:10 “10 Likewise, I say unto you, there is joy in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner that repenteth.” Hallelujah!
Pastor Roman Bogdasarov

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