Welcome to our website. It is our goal through this internet medium to share our vision with you concerning our work in the country of Slovakia. God has opened up many doors of Ministry, especially among the Roma people.
Take a few minutes and view each page. You will have a better understanding of the country of our calling.
John and Daralena will continue serving in Slovakia where they have been missionaries since 2009. Their present focus is on the Roma Gypsies of that country. They reside in the area known as the “Black Hole” of Slovakia where approximately half a million Roma Gypsies dwell. The Roma are a poverty stricken and marginalized people group throughout Europe. John and Daralena’s ministry encompasses a holistic approach. They engage in evangelism, construction teams, discipleship, and training leaders, as well as, humanitarian outreaches, teaching English and hygiene.
John and Daralena have been in ministry for more than 30 years. They planted a church in 1992, where they continued as senior pastors for 15 years until becoming approved AG missionaries in 2007. They have five grown children and four grandchildren. John is an ordained minister and Daralena is licensed with AG credentials.
With the fall of the “Iron Curtain” the people of Central and Eastern Europe have witnessed life without limitations and a new kind of freedom for now over two decades. But sadly, not all walls in this region of the world have come down. There are new walls being erected across Europe which are dividing people groups, cultures and societies, leaving thousands of wonderful people hurt in the process. Slovakia is witnessing major divisions and tensions between the predominantly Slav majority and the Roma minority.
(Roma people are also known in English as “Gypsies”)
Throughout most of this region the Roma are perceived as an undesirable underclass. In Central and Eastern Europe, feelings are particularly strong as poverty is deeper and ethnic Gypsy populations are much larger. Many nationals are offended by the ghettos in larger cities which often comprise of rundown public housing projects and the various settlements scattered throughout the country; made up of a series of self-constructed shanties, lacking running water, sewage, or heating.
With some 95 percent of Slovakia’s working-age Roma males unemployed; numbers of Roma children segregated in the schools and many of the Roma men and women having very little or no formal education or working skills, has created a problem of enormous proportions.
Building Bridges of Hope
For centuries, governments in this region have attempted to reform the Roma and force them to conform to laws and societal norms but all to no avail. The only thing that has proven to bring about major transformational values in the individual lives and villages of the Roma people is the life-changing message of the gospel of Jesus Christ. A government official in the eastern city of Sabinov, Slovakia said at the dedication of a New Roma Church in his city. “As a government, we have done many things to try to change the Gypsy problem in our country but the only thing that I have seen that has been able to transform the heart of the Gypsy people is the work of the church.”
That is why we are here! We want to be God’s hands and feet to help bring about a change in the lives of the Roma people that will affect them spiritually, educationally, physically and socially. As missionaries, it is our mission to destroy the walls that divide these various people groups and build bridges of hope and restoration to all people.
Welcome to our project page. This page is designed to inform people of the various projects we are involved with here in the country of Slovakia. The projects we have available are designed to accommodate teams of almost any size. If you are interested in ministry, evangelism, compassion care, food distribution, children, women, or construction work, we have something for your team to do. If you or your church is interested in getting involved, visit our Contact Us page for contact information. We look forward to partnering with you or your church team in missions.
Project —– Zehra, Slovakia/Church Building
This church is located in the village of Zehra. It has approximate 2,500 Roma residing in this valley. The building was formerly a pub for the village but when the Roma began to accept Christ, they needed a place to worship, so they obtained this old building and converted it into a church. Along with several teams from America and the work of the local people they now have a nice place to now call their church.
Project —– Vtackovce, Slovakia Church
This church is located in the village of Vtackovce. Approximately 800 Roma live in this remote area of Slovakia. Starting with only a handful of people in a small cell group, Convoy of Hope had an outreach in the village. Many of the Roma in Vtackovce and surrounding villages attended the outreach and accepted Christ as Savior. The cell group grew immediately into a thriving church. This old dilapidated building was used years before as an old Communist grain building, but today it is used as a sanctuary of worship for about 300 believers.
Ongoing Project —– Eastern Part of Slovakia/Church Building
In the far eastern part of Slovakia, only a few miles from the Ukrainian boarder is a thriving Roma church. They begin construction on a building in 2016 and have been able to get the outside of the building erected and roofed. They are now working to complete the inside. There will be much more work to be done to complete this project. If you are looking to bring a construction team to work here in Slovakia, this is a great project to be a part of.
Ongoing Project —– Village of Kendice/Church Building
Partner / Contact Us
Would you please consider partnering with us for the next four years so we can continue to share the love of Jesus with the poorest marginalized people group in Europe? Thank you in advance for your support through prayer and finances.