WARRENTON, Mo., May 1, 2014 /Christian Newswire/ — This July, Child Evangelism Fellowship, the largest Christian ministry to children in the world, will hold its fifth annual Good News Across Romania Campaign, which targets a different county of Romania every year with evangelistic clubs, called 5-Day Clubs. This year’s campaign will focus on the county of Prahova. There, CEF hopes to beat last year’s record established in Arad county where it shared the Gospel with 4250 children in five days.
Photo: Good News Across Romania 5-Day Club in Arad, July 2013
The genius of the 5-Day Clubs is their location: They are held where children naturally congregate rather than inside a local church. Depending on the community, clubs might be held in parks, community centers, or private backyards. The clubs themselves are a wonderful mix of learning and fun. Engaging Bible lessons, songs, and games have been designed to encourage relationship building among the children, with the club leaders, and most importantly, with God.
To reach so many children in such a short period of time requires considerable manpower and resources. Last year in Arad, 65 churches and 300 volunteers partnered with CEF Romania to hold 5-Day Clubs in 106 locations in the county. “It was CEF Romania’s biggest project yet with a number of organizational challenges but it was a huge success,” said Ms. Claire Bain, general manager for CEF Romania. “We are expecting and praying for Clubs in 200 locations and estimate that more children will hear the Gospel this year. God willing, 50 – 80 churches will be involved in the project.”
The Romanian ministry of Child Evangelism Fellowship has come a long way since it began in 1972, during the repressive dictatorship of Nicolai Ceausescu. The budding ministry blossomed after the dictator’s fall in 1989 and today the ministry reaches an average of 100,000 children per year. Founded by American CEF missionary, Trudy Kuhlman, the ministry held training meetings for leaders and clubs for children in secret locations. In an effort to preserve that secrecy the date, time and location of all meetings were never written down but had to be memorized by all participants. Children’s teaching materials were translated into Romanian then had to be smuggled out of the country for printing and then smuggled back in for use.
Today, CEF Romania is run by Romanian nationals, Iulian and Anca Mangalagiu, who assumed leadership of the ministry in 2008, fulfilling CEF International Ministries’ goal of national leadership for any foreign ministry it establishes. With 53 full-time workers and 436 volunteers, CEF Romania is active in 15 of the 42 counties of Romania, holding almost 400 Bible clubs, called Good News Clubs, during the school year as well as 209 5-Day Clubs (beyond those held for the Good News Across Romania Campaign) in the summer. Additionally, CEF Romania holds Easter and Christmas clubs, as well as summer camps; it also runs a Bible Correspondence Course and a Summer Missionary Training Course for teenagers interested in evangelizing children. “Our goal is to be in every county of Romania,” said Mr. Iulian Mangalagiu. “We are working diligently toward that end.”
If you would like further information or would like to donate to CEF Romania, please visit cefonline.com.