After I finished my time at the YWAM Amsterdam base for the Shine Seminar God gave me the blessing to go to the YWAM Central European staff gathering conference that was in Vajta, Hungary from May 23rd – 27th. Before I went to the conference I spent a few days in Budapest which I am really thankful for because I had such a great time during those few days that I spent there. I flew out of Amsterdam on May 21st at 2:20pm and I arrived in Budapest at 4:15pm.
I am so very grateful that my friend Zsuzsa met me at the airport. She was one of the students when I staffed my first DTS at the YWAM Târgu Mureş base in the fall of 2014. I haven’t seen her since the graduation so it was really great to see her again! She helped me get to the YWAM Budapest base (we took a bus and two metro trains), then we got something to eat for dinner and I got a few groceries for the weekend.
It was a real blessing to be able to stay at the YWAM Budapest base and it was actually my first time to visit the base in Budapest too. I met some really great people and reconnected with a couple that I know that serve at the base. There were two DTS outreach teams at the base when I was there so I definitely met a lot of new people while I was there. I stayed with a Swiss girl in her bedroom (she is on staff at the base).
On Sunday May 22nd it was a real blessing to spend the day with my friend Zsuzsa. We had
a really great time together and the weather was so beautiful outside too! I took a bus to meet her to go with her to church and then we hung out until the early afternoon. We went to the Calgary Chapel church. It was a great service and it was really nice that the sermon was in English and they had translation in Hungarian.
After church we went to a restaurant for lunch and then we went to a few different sightseeing places. We visited the St. Stephen’s Basilica church, we took a bus across the chain bridge, and then we went to the Buda Castle. We also enjoyed ice cream that was so good too! Budapest is a really beautiful city and it really reminded me of Prague especially with the river, the bridge and the castle. It was wonderful to spend some time with Zsuzsa and catch up with each other as well! In the evening one of the teams hosted a BBQ at the YWAM base so we were all invited to that which was really nice to be able to connect with everyone over dinner.
On Monday May 23rd Hannes and Doris and their kids picked me up with their car and we drove together to the Calgary Chapel Bible College/ Conference centre in Vajta which was about an hour and a half drive from Budapest. Hannes and Doris are from Germany and they are on the member care for the YWAM Central Europe region. It was really great to see them again and spend time with them on the way to where the conference was. The last time I saw them was actually when I visited them when I was in Germany last summer just before I went to the Awakening Europe conference in Nuremberg.
YWAM Central European staff gathering conference (May 23rd – 27th)
This conference is held every other year but this was the first time I was able to attend it so
it was definitely a blessing from God to be able to have the opportunity to go to it. During the time at the conference it was definitely a time of reunions and a time to connect with friends that I met over the last few years since I have been in YWAM. It was so good to see the YWAM Durres, Albania staff team again, the YWAM Cheb staff team and a couple of the staff from the YWAM Prague base as well. Albania was the first DTS outreach that I staffed and Czech Republic was the second DTS outreach that I staffed so it was really great to connect with them again. It was also really great to re-connect with the other missionaries from the different YWAM bases in Romania and meet some new people as well.
At the conference there were 35 different nations that were represented, 14 different
YWAM country locations that were represented and there were 249 people who came which includes all of the children and the three outreach teams that came to help with the children’s ministries during the conference (there was a DTS outreach team from Cluj, Romania, Seamill, Scotland and Durres, Albania). What a blessing it was from God to be able to come together for a conference and to be able to connect together with YWAM bases from all over the Central European region.
During the conference we had sessions in the morning, afternoon and evening. It was wonderful to have times to worship God together and we even sang “How Great is our God” in different languages which was really great to hear different people worship God in their native language. We often had times of intercession during the sessions and especially our very last session on Thursday evening (May 26th) we had an incredible time to pray for each other and intercede for the different nations in the Central European region including the brand new YWAM bases that have opened up since the last conference.
God also blessed us with a very special treat for this conference which was our YWAM
founders were our main speakers who are Loren and Darlene Cunningham. It was just really amazing to be able to meet them, hear their hearts that is filled with so much passion for God and the wealth of experience they brought was incredible.
Some of the things that God reminded all of us from what learned from their teaching from what we discussed when we did a take are: the importance of encouraging others, affirming others, to have partnership with people, there is unity in diversity, worshiping through celebrating nations, the importance of asking for forgiveness, to wait and not give up, to practice generosity, there are no limits with God of what He can do, we need to acknowledge who God is and remember His character, we need to remember to walk in humility and not in pride, to walk in the prophetic, to work well in a team, we are called by God and not by anyone else or by YWAM, faith comes from hearing and many more really great revelations.
I am really grateful for all the things that God did in my life during those few days. One of
the things we were asked to do on May 25th in the afternoon session was to write 3 things that we know that God wants us to do at this time in our lives. I am so very thankful that I can say by the grace of God that I have now done all three of those things now. God is so good!
On May 26th in the afternoon there were 12 different workshops that were offered at the conference. I was really interested in a lot of them but what caught my attention at the first glace when I saw the list of topics was the one on trafficking and sexual exploitation which was so good to be able to connect with other people who are passionate about this injustice issue who are serving in this region with YWAM.
We also had a much unexpected special blessing from God that a film team from the YWAM Kona base was able to come to the conference on Thursday May 26th. They showed us a film called “Lost Kites” which is about giving hope to orphans from three different individual stories in different countries. The movie was about an hour long, it was beautiful, inspiring and it left the viewers with a lot of hope. One of the guys who was there that day I actually met when I was at the Jinji base when I did my DTS outreach when I was a student which was when their team was on the film tour. I always wondered how the film had turned out so I am really glad I was able to see it and it was first time I got to see it as well.
On Friday May 27th I left from Vajta, Hungary with the DTS outreach team from the Cluj base from Romania. It was a real blessing to be able to travel back with them in their van. We ended up arriving in Cluj around 8:00pm that day so I decided to stay at the YWAM base that night and then I returned home to Târgu Mureş the next day. I am so very thankful that I was able to go to the conference right after the Shine Seminar because it was so very refreshing to be able to seek God with other missionaries who are serving from all over Central Europe and also to have some really great reunions as well.