St. Andrew has been committed to mission in Romania since the 1990’s. Under the communist regime religious education for children was ruled against the law and only the Orthodox church operated under the direct supervision of the government. In 1989, after the revolution, churches gained freedom, but struggled with resources and knowledge of child education. The original mission involved supporting churches in this early venture, where a group of church members packaged up a Vacation Bible School and headed to Romania.
We now partner with a local Baptist church to help support their mission. Florin and his church have planted 5 village churches, where they provide spiritual development, needed resources for the children to remain in school, a hot meal a day for children attending school, and the Bread Project. Today a team travels to Romania each summer to run a Vacation Bible School with as many as 100 Roma children in attendance. In addition, clothes, shoes, and school supplies are sent through out the year, as well as funding of the Bread Project.
In 2015 the vision of the mission transformed to the support of the Roma village churches. The Roma (Gypsy) communities are the most underserved minority in Europe, the children often don’t finish school, are unemployed, enter early marriages, and live in “villages” or slums with no running water or electricity. The government does not support or provide resources to the Roma, only local churches.