NBC / Kompas Missions

Monday, October 29, 2007

Photo gallery

I posted a link on my personal blog, but forgot to post one here too. Hope you like my 2007 Yo-burg photos.

Russia 2007 photo gallery

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Amazed by what He is doing

I am posting an encouraging email from Darin McFarland -- Rodney


God is up to Something!

November 17, 2007

Dear Friends,

God is charting new waters here. Things are happening that I have never seen in 15 years of campus ministry in Russia. Yesterday, three young men trusted Christ. Excuse the hockey analogy, but I have never seen a hat trick in campus ministry (3 goals in one game/3 new believers in one day). Another young man trusted Christ last week. Also, never before has there been so many student leaders. Around ten or so students helped to lead our recent evangelistic retreat. There were a total of 85 including staff in attendance with 43 of those being students who have not yet trusted Christ. All of them heard the gospel at least three times over the weekend through film and personal testimonies of other students. I know that God is using your prayers to open new doors. Please keep praying. We desperately need your prayers!

Answered Prayers

  • Since my last email four young men have trusted Christ.
  • We had our best evangelistic retreat in 15 years last weekend. It was totally student led.
  • The English classes went quite well despite smaller numbers. The smaller classes allowed for more discussion and closer relationships.
  • The first gospel of John Seeker Studies went well last night. We had ten students attend who have not yet believed in Christ.

Prayer Requests

  • That we would see more students attend our Seeker Studies on Tuesday nights.
  • That we could be successful and effective in the English Club that we hope to start in the next two weeks at the Economic Institute and Mining Institute.
  • That our four brand-new believers would become well grounded in their faith (Andre, Zhenya, Sergei and Kiril).
  • That the others who trusted Christ this semester would get more involved with our ministry and grow in their new faith (Guzel, Gulya, Katya, Oksana, Alyona, Ksenia, Olga, Oksana and Sergei).
  • That the church plant would continue to go well and that we could find a pastor. This Sunday is our first service that is open to new people.
  • That God would help us to be good stewards of this constantly growing and very complex ministry. We have a lot of new challenges with the recent growth and many more are coming with what we expect God will do in the near future.
  • That God would bring in a harvest of 100 students this year. This is a huge step of faith to pray this way but we wanted to ask God for something way beyond our ability to do in our own strength.
  • That God would help us with organization, communication, understanding and unity on a very large, multi-national, bi-lingual team.

In Need of His Grace,


Monday, October 15, 2007

We're baaaaack!

We got in about midnight Sunday night. We had a pretty uneventful trip back ... thanks for praying!

The Forest Fun Party was great. We had some games, food, and fun before we had to get back to the hotel. Thursday and Friday was rainy, but it cleared up for the party on Saturday ... thanks for praying!

I took over 500 photos this year plus a couple of small movies ... yowsa. I'll get some up for you soon.



Saturday, October 13, 2007

Russia 2007 update

I just posted a Russia 2007 update. Too keep from double posting you, just follow the link.

Please pray for Jerry, Chris, Holly, and me as we go to the Forest Fun Party. Pray for safe fun and please pray for a safe return. We'll be flying back on Sunday @ 1pm (Ruski time). See y'all back stateside ... Rodney.

Friday, October 12, 2007

One more thing...

Please pray for safety and fun at the Forest Fun Party. And stay turned for photos. I have a bunch and will put them online once I get home .... Pa-ka -- Rodney.

Weekend retreat

It's been an incredible two weeks. I'll post more of my stories when I return. We made a lot of progress in the lives of individual students -- Vitaliy, Katya, Sasha, Luba, irina, Vlad, and many others. It's hard to leave, but we leave them in God's hands, and He will continue to draw them to Himself. We are His messengers, and we praise God that we could be used in this way. -- Jerry Pattillo

These two weeks have been really awesome. I have had a wonderful class full of awesome students. We have had good attendance hanging out after the classes and students wanting to meet up with us during the day. Please pray that all of our students would have a desire to attend the Bible discussions Compas will have after we leave. Please pray for safe travel as well. -- Rodney.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Last English class

Tonight is our last English Talk the Talk class. Please pray for all of us to "finish well". Pray that all our students will come to the last class and that they would come to the Forest Fun Party retreat.

Thanks to everyone who has been praying for us. We appreciate it! Pray for energy to finish off the week and the retreat and also for our traveling back to the good ole U.S. of A. on Sundy.

See y'all soon ...


Tuesday, October 09, 2007

1 came to Christ!

I almost forgot to post the best news of all, there is one more fellow believer in Ekat this week! A Russian student Igor shared his faith to another student Andrew. Andrew accepted believed in Jesus as his saviour! It's awesome to see students who are eager to share their faith with fellow students.

Please pray that Andrew will continue to follow Jesus and grow in his new faith.


Student updates

I have an appointment today at 3pm (Ekat time) with a student and I hope to make some connections and maybe bring up spiritual topics. And on Thursday I am going out again with Ivan and Alex. Both are in the higher speaking group of my class.

During the parable about Sowing the Seed, I asked "which type of soil do you think you are"? Ivan answered that he was the good soil. And Alex said he thought he was becoming good soil. Praise God! When we go out on Thursday I am going to try and present the gospel and see what they say. They do hear the gospel in Talk the Talk, but it is shared over the two week period. And I think both of them are ready to hear it all at once. Please pray for them and for me.


Sunday, October 07, 2007

Sunday the 7th

Chris and Holly got in last night, so the team is now complete. We are looking forward to serving this next week and attending the Forrest Fun Party.

I am still excited about Ivan and please pray that I get to share more of the Good news with him 1-on-1.

Jerry and I had some quality time yesterday Saturday with his students. Please pray that Jerry continues to connect with his students and that he gets opportunities to share.

Please pray for Chris and Holly as they start their classes and as they try to connect with friends and prior students.

God bless,

The Ekat Team.

Friday, October 05, 2007

Ekat Friday update

Hello everybody!

Today is Friday and I've been running all over town and have not had much time to post any information .... which all things considered is probably a good thing. :-)

On Wednesday Jerry and I were invited to the "International Day of Translators" at the Humanitarian University. Debbie told us they might want one of us to give a brief talk. Little did we know that we were going to be VIPs on stage along side a Russian teacher and a French teacher. BTW, they wanted BOTH of us to give a talk. Luckily I don't suffer from stage fright and I got to go last <G>. We gave a little speech to ~100-150 university students. One of the students was from an old Talk the Talk class of mine. So I got to spend a few minutes after the class catching up and gave an invitation to our weekend retreat.

After the "ceremony" they had a tea and coffee reception for the speakers and staff. It was a lot of fun. I was talking to Olga who is an English teacher at the university. She told me she was in Talk the Talk classes last summer. There is "summer project" that is like our fall classes but I think the University of Kentucky puts those on. So I got to asking her if she thought the stories (parables) were real or just metaphorical? She wasn't sure and I got to talk about Jesus and the Bible with her. I think, by the end, she was beginning really think about spiritual things. I doubt I will see her again, but lift up a prayer for Olga.

I think I have a class that is really open to hearing the parables in our Talk the Talk lessons. One student Ivan is really exciting to me. He is very smart and he is very caring. When we talked about "love your neighbors", he was right there. No matter who the neighbor is, a begger, a drug dealer, a Chechnyan, etc... No matter who it was, he said he'd help them no matter what.

Yesterday, Thursday, he and some of his friends met Jerry and me and took us on a tour of Ekaterinburg. He went all out to show us a good time. He bought us ice cream and paid to take us to the top of Ekat's tallest building to its lookout point. Since students don't have much money to begin with, this was a grand jesture. After classes that night he said he wished our tomorrows to be as great as today. He also said you have "black days" and "white days" and now we will have our "white days". Please pray for Ivan.

Tonight is the scavenger hunt, which means about 1 hour of non-stop running. It is always a highlight for the students and I have a 2 year winning streak to defend. :-)) Please pray for energy and endurance for all.

I have lots of pictures to share once I get back home.

God bless .... Rodney

Sunday, September 30, 2007

Pre-vee-yet America,

We got to Ekat at ~ 12:30am ... we're flying the redeye (and how)! We made every connection and so did our bags ... what a praise that is.

Our itinerary was slightly different this year. We took British Airways across the Atlantic instead of American (usually on a 777). So we got to fly a British Airways 747 ... I always wanted to fly in one of those. All I can say now is, "Wow, I want my 777 back". Which just goes to show you can't please everyone all the time. But seriously it was a good experience to fly on a 747 and I can say now I am over that. :-)

Robbie Update: I just posted onto my personal blog and instead of send you all duplicate email, just click the link and you can read his good report. Thanks to all you who are praying for him and are praying for us.

Prayer Requests:

  • Us to beat jet lag
  • Chris and Holly's flights to go well
  • Strong and deep connections with our students
  • A unity of spirit between the NBC team and the stint team

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Please pray for Robbie

My brother-in-law Robbie is scheduled to undergo surgery on Sept. 28th ... that is the very day I leave for Ekaterinburg Russia. This is an involved surgery that lasts about 7 hours.

Robbie has been diagnosed with kidney cancer and it has spread to his adrenals. The doctors will be removing the infected kidney and the infected adrenal glands.

What little good news we have is that his second kidney is clear and his lungs, bones, and brain are also clear! Praise GOD!

Our family covets your prayers very much.

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Ekat 2007

Hello Again!

Well, our NBC team leaves for Ekat, RU on Friday morning! I can't believe we leave so soon and I haven't posted to our Ekat blog yet.

We have a lean and mean team this year. For the first week Jerry Pattillo (and NBC staff-er) and I leave for Ekat and Talk the Talk classes. I anticipate a lot of walking, running, and serving ... business as usual. . :))

For week two, Jerry and I will stay and welcome the veteran husband and wife team Chris and Holly.

Jerry and I will be relying heavily on each other as we and Darin's stint team lead/local team lead Russian students into the brave new world of knowledge and dependence on God. Personally I look forward to renewing old friendships and developing new ones.

Please P-R-A-Y for us! Please pray that:

  • we will be humble servants of God.
  • that students will consistently attend the classes.
  • for students to attend the weekend retreat.
  • that everyone we meet will be "open" to our message.
  • for divine appointments.
  • for Satan to be silenced ... he hates that! :)

But seriously folks, while I am in Russia I have a brother-in-law that will be having surgery for kidney cancer. I am both excited and worried about leaving at this point in time. I am excited for all the new people I will meet and entwine my life with. And I am worried about those I leave behind and their plight in this life. I know I will be back to join their struggles, but the uncertainty of surgery and cancer grips my whole family. Right now I can't give you much more of a prayer request other than P-R-A-Y! For us and for Robbie (my brother-in-law). Pray, Pray, Pray .... God will accomplish the rest; 30, 60 and even a 100 fold.

The prayers of the righteous availth much.

Monday, October 02, 2006

Hello from Ekat!


Sunday, December 18, 2005

Merry Christmas Russia!

I just got my Christmas letter out this weekend ... you can see it here in HTML, or here in PDF.

Merry Christmas to all! ... Rod

Note: the HTML version is smaller for viewing online, the PDF is larger for printing.

Monday, November 28, 2005

Thanksgiving, David's Operation and Year-end giving

We are so Thankful!

November 28, 2005

Dear Praying Friends,

I hope this email update finds you doing well. Thanksgiving has come and gone and the Christmas season is upon us. We trust that you enjoyed a few days to be with friends and family. We enjoyed Thanksgiving with our team. Besides eating lots of turkey, we also watched some taped football games and played board games together. The children enjoyed making gingerbread houses out of cookies and frosting (See below).

Susan and Jenn with Nick, Abbey and Bear

We are so Thankful

  • Alex’s emergency appendix operation eight weeks ago was a total success. We were quite impressed with the excellent care he received at the Children’s Hospital here in Ekaterinburg. He is completely healed up now and back to playing hockey.
  • We have a wonderful team of co-workers here in Ekaterinburg.
  • We have a wonderful team of ministry partners who faithfully pray for and support our ministry.
  • Nine students have trusted Christ this semester. Three students have come to faith in the past week.
  • Abbey and Nick are both enjoying Russian kindergarten where they are learning not only to speak, but also read and write in Russian.
  • Bear continues to thrive in his school situation. He has not only made great progress in his English communication skills, but he can communicate quite well in Russian.
  • After nearly two years of hard work, Abbey was invited to participate in her first ballet recital last week.
  • We are unworthy but thankful recipients of God’s grace through the Lord Jesus Christ.

Please Pray

  • Little David has had seven ear infections in the first eighteen months of his life. Susan and David are currently in Helsinki, Finland. On Monday David will have surgery to insert ear tubes. Please pray for a successful surgery and that this would solve his chronic ear problems. Also, please pray for safe travel and a quick return. I am home alone with the other four kids until Thursday morning.
  • That many of the students who are still considering the claims of Christ would place their faith in Him.
  • That many of our believing students will be able to attend the Winter Bible Conference in St. Petersburg this year.
  • That the Lord would provide a classroom helper for Bear for the next school year. (If you know of any speech therapists or others who have a heart to do a one year mission please let us know.)

Year End Gift

Each year, we ask you to consider making a special year-end gift. This helps to make up for any shortfall we experience during the rest of the year. Also, we have encountered some higher expenses than we expected over the past year. In particular, these higher costs are in the areas of schooling, conferences and medical bills. Additionally, we were recently informed that our cost for the Campus Crusade benefits package will be increased by $110 per month in 2006. Would you prayerfully consider helping us to meet these financial needs by making a special year-end gift? If you are able to help in meeting this financial need just click on the link below. This will take you to our secure web-site where you will be given all the information you might need to make a year-end gift. Thank you for considering this request.


In Christ’s great love,
Darin, Susan, Alex, Bear, Abbey, Nick and David

Tuesday, November 22, 2005

Email followups

I got this pic of the Forrest Fun Party from a student Natalia. Natalia is back row right, and next to her is her best friend Kate. Natalia is from Rodney, Julie, and Linsay's class; Kate was next door in Ashley, Mark, John and Myra's class (correct me if I got that wrong).

Forrest Fun Party

I have received emails from both of these students. This first one is from Kate. John told us that, in class, Kate said "modern science has disproven the existence of God". Interesting that she is staying plugged in w/ Compas.

Hello, This is Katya, the best friend of Natasha. I am continuing to go to Compas. I like our meetings. We'll have Halloween soon! I would like to make a special image - something uncanny but madly nice (as Karlson said).

And this is from Natalia:

My studies at my Institute is very interesting, but it keeps me busy almost all the time, because I have got a lot of home tasks. I try to find a bit free time to meet Jenn ( we speak about the Bible or sometimes just walk) Jenn, Ashley, Natalie and other Americans, who also study in Russia, came to our Institute and talk to students. I think everyone was glad to meet them. I invited my friends to the games which are on Tuesday. They were happy.

So both are in the student meetings and making friends with the stinters; even inviting more friends. That's encouraging, keep praying that this year will bring BIG things in Russia. I think year has great Kingdom potential!

Thursday, October 20, 2005

Russia Gallery for 2005

I finally finished putting in names and comments in my photo gallery. Unfortunately I dropped my camera and exposed some of the second week photos. But here is most of my Russia 2005 "Talk the Talk" gallery (click here or on the image below):

title image for Russia 2005 gallery

Enjoy ...

Uncle Rodney

Saturday, October 15, 2005

More Good news, this time from Oleg and Sana

This is an email from Oleg -

"Hello Chris and Holly!Thank you for your help with Classes. I never had more wonderful time in my life. We have like 50-60 students each week on our student's meetings. We never had so many. Thank you. OLEG and Sana"

We also have heard from 3 of our students, and all 3 are excited about the Tuesday night meetings. I am really looking forward to hearing about what the Lord is doing this year.

Monday, October 10, 2005

Great news from Darin!

News from Darin:

Dear Friends,

Thank you so much for coming to Ekaterinburg and participating in the English Outreach. God was pleased by your time here and so was the local team. Already we are beginning to see the fruit of your labors. This year's group is very excited about continuing the relationships that you initiated and invested in. Our first weekly meeting for seekers had about 70 students attend on Tuesday. Our first weekly meeting for believers had around 20! Already, we have met individually with many who attended the classes. I had a great time with Andre from Amy's class. Either he is already a believer or close to trusting the Savior. Pray that he would come to complete understanding of the gospel and that he would completely trust Him. Another student from the past knocked on Oleg's door unannounced this past Friday and asked if he could talk about God. This young many named Dima prayed to receive Christ. He is just the first of many to come this year, and all because of your investment and participation in the ministry here in Ekat.

Let me continue to challenge you to pray about coming for a Stint next year and to consider financially supporting Oleg and Sanna.

From Russia with love,


Monday, October 03, 2005

Home again!

Hey y'all,

I tried to post last night but my internet connection was down and refused to come up. Called SBC tech support today and they said there was "no problems", but my connection "coincidently" started working a couple of hours later. Hmmmmm. Only this isn't the first such "conincidence".

Anywho, we are back safe and sound. We left the hotel ~ 9am Ekat.RU time and I got home ~ 2am CDT.US time. That's 10pm CDT Saturday thru 2am CDT Monday; or 28 hours of traveling! And I know that others got home later than I did. The trip was pretty standard, including a 1-1.5 hour delay in Chicago b/c of bad weather. Our baggage carrousel was C-31, but AA was nice enough to reroute our baggage to C-4. So after a bit of scrambling around we were all set. BTW, thanks Bob and Julie for the ride!!

I'll post some additional thoughts and a photo album later. Just wanted you to know we all made it back safe and sound!


Saturday, October 01, 2005

Packing up is hard to do ...

Ohhh, sorry for the bad pun. But packing day is always the worst day for me on these trips. We get to go to the weekend retreat (aka "Forrest Fun Party"); which is a first for us. It will be a great time to meet with the students, but also the last time (this year) that we get to meet with the students.   :-{

It really is hard to make such great friendships and then in 1 or 2 weeks leave them. Even though many students will keep in touch by email, it isn't the same as being here.

Please pray that all the students would come to the retreat and that each one would continue the friendships with a stint member and with Kompas.

Can't wait to put up a photo album for this year ... see you soon.