November 2020

December Update

A season to wait?

God has turned my attention to an important phrase for this season of life. In Psalm 25:3,5 we read,

“None who wait for you shall be put to shame… for you are the God of my salvation; for you I wait all the day long.”

In Psalm 27:14 we read,

“Wait for the Lord; be strong, and let your heart take courage; wait for the Lord!”

And in Lamentations 3:26, we read,

“It is good that one should wait quietly for the salvation of the Lord.”

Waiting is not as exciting a theme as moving mountains. It is especially uninteresting to our generation that seeks to produce systems and technology that remove waiting from life. But God knows that His children benefit from being in a place of waiting for Him. God knows that waiting is not useless, but a tremendous blessing to provide the best environment for our spiritual growth. 2020 has been a year where God has given us an opportunity to grow as we wait for the salvation of the Lord.

Waiting helps expose the true foundation of our hope. That foundation is either Jesus and therefore we continue to have His peace and remain thankful in uncertain circumstances moving toward Him in worship. Or we may find our foundation for hope is in other things and therefore we fall into despair, complaining and distance ourself from God.

God reminds us that waiting is part of His plan to prosper us. He has used waiting in my life over this year to keep my hope firmly fixed in Jesus. May our Father grant us insight in this season of waiting and cause all of us to have an unmovable hope in our Savior.

“They who wait for the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles; they shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint.” (Isa 40:31)

Reconnecting with English Campers


Above: At the end of October we were able to go hiking with some students who participated in our Summer English Camp. Other PI missionaries have also been holding get togethers in a coffee house in Budapest to stay connected with campers.

Youth group



Up until just a few weeks ago, we were allowed to continue to have our youth group meetings at the local community center (with the requirement of masks). We continue to be thankful for connecting with new teens in the community and thankful for the opportunity to share God’s truth with them each week.

Above: Please pray specifically for Viki (pictured farthest right and below). Viki has become increasingly open to the Gospel and even attended Sunday worship service for the first time a few weeks ago!


Above: Hiking with the youth group at the end of October.


Above: Sharon with Erika. We’ve been partners in church planting with Erika and her husband Miki since 2003. We’re so thankful for their faithfulness and perseverance over these many years of service. We would appreciate your prayers for healing for Erika who is experiencing an ongoing health issue.

Above: Our youngest daughter Ziva with Emily enjoying time together on our hike we put together for the youth group in our church.

Above: Please also pray for Noel who attended various ministries we held in Petofibanya as a child and was recently reconnected with our youth group. Our daughter Elianna shares a bus ride to school with Noel and has had many opportunities to talk to him about the reason for our hope in Jesus and other theological questions.

Zsofi’s Baptism


Just before the Hungarian government released a new 30 day restriction against public gatherings, we were able to hold a baptismal service for Zsofi.

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Here is what Zsofi shared at her baptism:
“Before I came to know God, I would compare myself to others. I paid attention to how they dressed, how they acted and I always felt I could never be like them. I had a very low self-esteem. I heard about Bible stories when I was younger, but I thought they were just made up. I thought if the stories happened a long time ago, they had nothing to do with my life today. I didn’t believe that I could have a personal relationship with God.

Last year, Luca invited me to the VBS in Petofibanya so I could fulfill my required social-service hours for school. The first day, I just didn’t understand why all the people who were serving there were so happy. What was all this unity? It was like something I had never seen in my life. I wanted what they had.

Throughout the summer and in youth group meetings I learned a lot about God and His great love. I learned that God sent His Son Jesus for me and that He died for my sins. This was so amazing to me and I had never heard this before. After that summer I decided that I wanted God in my life. When I put my faith in Jesus, those issues I once had began to fade away. The emptiness that was in me was replaced with Jesus filling me. And I understood that I could have a living relationship with God. And it’s not a fairytale!” — Zsofi

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Zsofi’s testimony reminds me of the power of unity in Christ. Jesus prayed for us

“…That they may be one even as we are one, I in them and you in me, that they may become perfectly one, so that the world may know that you sent me and loved them even as you loved me.” (John 17:22b-23)

Praise God for continuing to work this unity out within us and using VBS as a way to proclaim that Jesus was sent from God as Savior and Lord.


Bondi's baptism


Above: Attila standing behind me is a member of the church plant in Jászfényszaru. He began reaching out to his childhood friend Bondi (white shirt) when he became deathly ill. Attila constantly brought the love of Christ and continued to explain the Gospel. Bondi ended up repenting and putting his faith in Jesus Christ. He asked that we help him to be baptized since there was no one in his area that could do it. Praise God for using Attila to reach his friend and for the gift of salvation that God was pleased to give Bondi through Christ!

Allen’s uneventful Covid and Ellie’s very eventful appendicitis

After applying just one spritz of cologne, the bathroom is USUALLY filled with a strong but pleasant aroma. I had just been testing a newly purchased bottle. Was I ripped off? Was it filled with water? This scent is really weak I thought. I sprayed another spritz and then put some on my wrist. By the time the thought occurred to me that this could be Covid, I was drenched in cologne. Hilarious. Like many of you, I then endured a swab exploring regions in my nose otherwise never known by mankind. Although I had no other symptoms, the swab test indicated Covid. By God’s grace and Him answering the prayers of many, I had a very uneventful experience with this terrible virus. However, at this same time in November, Ellie was having a very difficult time recovering from having her appendix removed.


First there was the process of finding the right hospital for Ellie in a time when many are tasked for just Covid cases. God led us to the right one. After a successful appendectomy, Ellie returned home only to become feverish and feel increased pain. Sharon brought her back to the hospital and by God’s grace was able to stay in a private room with Ellie.

Above: Unfortunately, Sharon and Ellie couldn’t be home for Ziva’s 9th birthday, so they joined in virtually from the hospital in Budapest.

After days of monitoring and examining and heavy doses of antibiotic, Ellie turned a corner. God took away the fever and her strength began to return. We praise God that we could have the medical care we needed in a time of rapidly increased cases of Covid putting strain on the medical system. Praise God that while Allen had Covid, the rest of the family was protected and free of the virus. (Sharon and Ellie tested negative the second time returning to the hospital).

Above: Goodbye hosptial. Yay, time to go home!

Above: Ellie back at home with the family. She still needs to gain back the weight she lost and feels better each new day.

Above: While our entire household was in quarantine since Allen tested positive for Covid, Ziva found ways to continue her daily exercise. In my office upstairs, I often hear the rushing “thump thump thump” sound. Then silence. Then “thump thump thump”. And I know Ziva is running laps around the coffee table and then jumping from one couch to another.

Above: Our thanksgiving dinner on the last day of our COVID quarantine.


Above: Our son Ben (exceeding my height) is now living in an apartment in Budapest and attending school with a major in political science. Praise God for a good transition to college and a good experience at school. Ben was also able to get his first job which isn't as easy when you are an American with the type of visa and situation we are in. Our older daughters Ellie and Kira have classes online at home in their pajamas while our youngest Ziva continues to attend school without the school closure the older kids are experiencing.





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May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope. — Rom 15:13