EARLY FALL 2015
Hello again to our dear family and friends from the Curran family in Tambov, Russia…. Ray, Rebecca, Ray Jr., and Bobby.
We continue to serve the Lord and the Russian people here, pastoring this church in this city of Tambov. Recently, we asked a married couple in the church, Dima and Lena (pictured below with their children), who have been attending for many years, how this ministry has impacted their lives.
Lena (30 years old):
I received Christ here at this church when I was 18 years old and have been going ever since. I met my Christian husband, Dima, here.
He came from Murmansk, Russia and was already a Christian. God put us together. Ray gave us some counseling and taught us and everybody else what a Christian marriage should be like. I am so glad I had this Christian foundation while I was young. You see, at my job as a cook in a restaurant, I see all kinds of young women getting into trouble. I could have been there too. Ray’s sermons help me have more faith to be a Christian witness to my co-workers. They see that I don’t drink, smoke, or curse like the rest of them and they all know I am a Christian.
We have two children, Egor, who is 6, and Yanna, who is 3. They both go to Sunday school that Rebecca teaches. They learn Bible verses and hear Bible stories. They grow up believing in God. I want them to have a Christian foundation like I did. They like going to Sunday School.
Dima (29 years old):
I became a Christian when I was 14 years old when I lived in Murmansk, Russia. I moved to Tambov and started going to Calvary Chapel where I met Lena. After some time, Lena and I fell in love and were married in the church.
Once an outreach group came here from California and there was a great drummer named Darren. He gave his testimony and said that his vision for the future was simply to play the drums and follow Christ. I decided then and there that this was what I wanted to do with my life too. After some time, an opportunity came up for me to play the drums at church and I have come every Sunday to play the drums rain or shine ever since.
Since my wife Lena often now has to work Sundays, I always bring the kids myself, even when they have other important activities on Sunday. I always manage to fit church in. I want them to have a good Christian foundation. Often on Sunday, little Egor’s friend asks him where he is going and he proudly answers, “To church!” This is a country where people only go to church on certain traditional church holidays but not for the purpose of enjoyment, learning, or life application. So it is quite something to say every Sunday, “I’m going to church”.
I like going to church. I like the way Ray teaches through whole books of the Bible, chapter by chapter. I know what to expect the next time. This week we studied Romans 9 and I know that next week it will be Romans 10. So next week will build on what I learned this week. This way, I feel that I am really growing in my faith. I have plenty of Christian friends and I have an eternal perspective on life.
Please pray for my mother and my wife’s mother that they would be true followers of Christ.
It’s has been a great joy and privilege for us to be a part of the Lord’s work as He has changed the lives of so many people here over the years by the power of His Spirit and the teaching of the Word of God.
One of the hardest things of the mission field is to watch our children grow up and then leave us to live in the States when they become adults. This happened for the second time this past Summer when our 18 year old son, Dara, graduated from Russian high school and decided to move to where our relatives live in California and start his adult life there.
Dara said good-bye to his friends, packed his belongings, and we traveled with him to California. Ray bought him an older but seemingly reliable Mazda pick up and taught him how to drive it. Dara passed his driving test 2 days before we went back for Russia, so we were very happy about that. So he is now on his own.
Then about a week after we left, Dara got a job with a crew of electricians working on houses. Dara has always had a mechanical gift so he fit right in and the boss is pleased with his work. He earns good money doing it as well.
Wow, the Lord takes care of our children when we can’t. Our 21 year old daughter, Elizabeth, is now in her last year at Biola University. She is planning to go to medical school afterwards to become a doctor.
So now just our 2 younger sons are still with us… Ray Jr. (age 16), and Robert (age 12).
Finally, we thank you for sharing this brief moment of time with us. Please remember this ministry in your prayers.
Thank you for all you do for us. May God bless you! With much love in Christ,
Ray & Rebecca Curran