A few years after Romanian Ministries started, some comments were made that gave us cause for thought.
A much respected friend questioned the practice of raising funds for Romania from wealthier nations, citing the danger of an unhealthy dependence on the part of Romanian Christians. Now, we couldn’t claim to be in entire agreement with this, as non-provision of funds would also cause serious hunger and stymy many a ministry, but still, it was cause for thought.
An equally respected friend suggested that funds from the UK be diverted into an income generating scheme in Romania itself, thus securing an increased return and transferring the funding mechanism to Romania. Thought provoking again, but what could be done?
In time, a possibility appeared in the form of a Romanian Ministries land project for our first pastor, Doru Decean.
The basic premise was simple – Doru had been a part-time farmer for many years. If his experience was combined with additional resources, might it not be possible to generate funds for his support from within Romania itself?
Prayerfully venturing forward, supporters of Romanian Ministries provided funds for the purchase of 4 acres of land and also 4 large greenhouses. This was the easy part. Doru, ably assisted the hard-working Roma Christian Sorin, sowed, cultivated and sold the produce throughout the harvesting months of the year.
At times, it got complicated. One of Doru’s main competitors for a contract with a hospital successfully managed to undercut him, before offering an even lower price to buy Doru’s stock from him. His offer was politely declined.
Furthermore, experimentation with cheaper seeds led to very variable results, with the majority of the potato harvest being lost in 2016.
Overall, however, results have been very encouraging. 2015 saw an overall profit of £2,000 for Pastor Doru, with a further £600 being either distributed to other ministries or given away to poor families. 2016 saw an increase on this, with £2,600 being raised for Doru and £300 being given away to needy causes.
Particularly encouraging has been the fact that this is significantly more than Romanian Ministries was passing to Doru per annum prior to the land project commencing. Also, at this rate, the full costs of the land project will have been recouped within four years, a wonderful achievement.
We give thanks to the Lord for His goodness in encouraging His hardworking and godly servant, and look for further blessing in the years to come.