The three of us are just back from almost two weeks in Ukraine where our hosts in Oleg and Inga Romanenko did a really excellent job in organising a busy and rewarding schedule for us, for which we’re extremely grateful.
To try and maximise the use of time we always try and fit in as much as we can when we’re away. On this occasion Liz ran a Financial Sozo training day on our first day in Kiev, a Wednesday, which we followed with a two day Sozo for Couples training for roughly 30 delegates. On the Sunday the three of us personally sozoed the six delegates who had applied to be mentored and, hopefully, given a First release to do Sozo for Couples sessions in their own churches. One couple were old friends, Victor and Irena from Moscow, who we had last seen in Redding last November, so it was really encouraging to see their commitment to Sozo for Couples and the intention to launch it in Russia.
On the Monday and Tuesday we worked with our six prospective Firsts, mentoring them as they learned the differences between individual and couples Sozos, and then observing them do a session to ensure their capability and that they’re a “safe pair of hands”. On the Tuesday we also had the pleasure of welcoming back Svitlana, Sasha and Nikolay, all of whom had received a First Release on our last visit in June ’19 and wanted to be observed for a Second Release, enabling them to offer SfC beyond their own church congregations. All three had travelled considerable distances to join us and all three did a great job and were given their Second Release, joining Maureen Clark and Laurie Westwood from the USA.
The Wednesday saw us being driven by Oleg to their home city, Kharkiv, some 500 Km to the east of Live where they had organised a Friday evening / Saturday marriage “retreat” for local Christian couples. Speaking at an event such as this was a first for all of us and we’d put in a lot of preparation for our various talks before we left the UK. It was really interesting to be able to share a Biblical view of marriage and what it means to live that out with couples living in such a different culture to our own.
And that was it! On Sunday morning a wonderful driver drove us the 500Km to Kiev airport, turned around and drove home again…I have no idea how he managed that! It was a long day of travelling for him and us!
We’re home for some weeks now. Our next SfC training will be in Germany in early May, details at https://www.vineyard-speyer.org/index.php/action/konferenzen-seminare/lam-fuer-ehepaare
We’d love to hear from you! If you’d like to organise a Sozo for Couples training in your own church just let us know…