If put the month experience in one word, it would be: WOW! Or, in few words: O Lord, how great are thy works!
Despite of all, we did it – we have managed to make the Symposium and the Summit back to back reaching the goals of every event successfully! May the Lord be praised!
The Symposium (see the picture attached) is, as you know, a short-term mission to the tribes of intellectuals we are doing twice a year for a decade. The area of academia is the hardest soil that requires most of preparation before we can expect a harvest. However the Word of God keeps working, and in the long run we can observe the worldview shift even with some most persistent atheists (for the sake of fair and open game we invite non-believers of high academic positions to be co-chairpersons of the Symposium sections.)
Here is a record of the Philosophy section ending proclaimed by its co-chairman Dr. Felix Lazarev of the Tavrida National University, where he heads Philosophy Department (former Marxism-Leninism Philosophy Department) for decades. Closing the session he has addressed the audience with the following words: “Thank you so much for your participation and interesting discussion that we had during our meetings. I have tried to make every effort to give more room for dialogue, because this is very important. The conference itself deals with an important issue: man in his worldview. Indeed, the major question we face in life, and we try to tackle with it here, is: What is man’s purpose for life? As I understand it, man’s purpose is to know God and to draw closer to God.”
Amen! ‘Thou art not far from the kingdom of God.’ Praise the Lord! We do not know how much it will take for the person to make a decision, but it hard to underestimate the impact of the man with his position worldview change on the faculty and students he has influence on. Please keep this man in your prayers.
Right after the closing words of the Symposium we went to Yalta for the Summit, where about 50 leading apologists from former Soviet Union came together (see the picture attached) for mutual recourses and experience sharing, training and equipping. We had people from Ukraine, Russia, Uzbekistan and Moldova. The most remote participants’ homes has 9 hours time difference and more then 4.000 miles between them. Most of them never met each other before, but by the end they feel as one big family team and got a great encouragement for the ministry development.
Networking and mutual encouragement was the main goal of the summit, however we pay much attention to the training as well. The workshops at the Summit were:1. An apologetic of the bodily resurrection of Jesus2. Apologetics and Politics3. Apologetics and the Arts4. Gospels as Historical Documents5. How to Use Critical Thinking in Apologetics6. Planning and Developing Your Own Apologetics Ministry7. Recent Controversies in Historical Apologetics8. Strengths, Weaknesses and Strategy of Historical Arguments in the Current Philosophical Climate9. The Nature and Value of Scientific Apologetics10. The Place of Reason in Apologetics11. The Problem of Evil12. What is the status of Intelligent Design, and is it a helpful apologetical tool?
The very special treat for them was a gift of a set of the books on the various issues of apologetics, as well as two new documentary videos beta version presentation – ‘Ice Age Civilizations’ and ‘Walking Trough the Past’. The former one is a Russian version of the video (http://iceagecivilizations.com) that discloses false ideas on Ice Age Chronology and human civilizations history. ‘How much I wish I knew about all that facts earlier!’ – some people say after the presentation.
The later video is based on Moscow Paleontology Museum exposition. It seems like our work has reached the goal. It has encouraged many to use the museums at their regions (every town has one – they were developed by communists as a part of the ideology propaganda) for spreading the truth about Creation.
The rest of the month was devoted to the Summit follow-up – sending requested information and materials to the participants, encouraging them in their ministry, sharing the experience. People feel very inspired by understanding themselves as a part of God’s greater plan now. The Summit became a very important milestone in the Apologetics in former communist countries development. It will never be the same.
Now we are working on technical issues of making the Summit materials available for everyone in the format convenient for them. We have already issued a DVD-ROM with the seminars and workshops audio records in MP3 format, Summit pictures collection and various bonus audio (MP3) and video (Mpeg4) materials.
The video version of the workshops and seminars are going to be issued in month since it requires more editing. However we are still excited by the opportunity to have a new studio in a year, and the production will be much easier then. Please keep in your prayers our need for the funds to make the new office reconstruction in the way it will serve the best for the ministry.
The release version of the videos ‘Walking thru the past’ and ‘Ice Age Civilizations’ are completed and going for the print now.
The culmination of the month was brief but productive trip to Kiev where I had being issued a visa to continue my studies at Asbury in January-February. Please keep my upcoming trip in your prayers as well.
Please pray for our ministry and all the projects mentioned above. Pray also for my family and for our team. You are in our prayers as well.