Lithuania: Project for Kedainiai Town

Kedainiai, LITHUANIA [Mantas Kucinskas]. More than 40 young members of Adventist church from Northern Ireland, Wales and Lithuania took part in the project “The Christian Youth Days – Kedainiai 2004”. The project which lasted for one week attracted not only hundreds of young people who had an opportunity to feel the Christian power but it also played an immense part in making known our church in a positive way in our society.

“It is very important in such country as Lithuania where the Church meets with the trying to be imputed to the image of “a sect” and where the state government will consider the status of the church in the near future”, Giedrius Rimsa the secretary of Lithuanian mission of Adventist church said.

The town authorities got very much interested in the project from the first days and supported it with all their enthusiasm. They organized an official meeting in the local administration with the leaders of the project. There they had an opportunity to tell their plans. The press representatives took part in the meeting as well. Later during the week they watched the events attentively and wrote reports in local newspapers and TV.

“This week shook the town really”, one of the leaders and the minister of Adventist church in Kedainiai Mantas Kucinskas told. “Even when organizing the project I saw wonderful works of God and when everything started only the blind couldn’t see them.”

“We were supported by the local government, most of Christian denominations and individual people. The goals of the project were simple and understandable to the society, i.e. service, sharing experience, communication and popularization of Christian way of life among the youth.”

Evening in Kaunas, Lithuania
Evening in Kaunas, Lithuania
The project consisted of three major parts – physical work, i.e. cleaning the town surroundings, charity during which money was collected for a difficult operation for a little boy and cultural events and socializing. That is exactly what the town needed at the moment. The local government, the mayor and other local office workers were very interested in cleaning the surroundings of the town. Not long after the project, events for the town birthday had to begin and all works concerning the festival were very intensive. The headman of the town speaking with journalists expressed great gratitude to the Adventist church and everybody involved in the beautifying the town. “That is a great help to the community. I would like to invite you to organize projects like that next year too.”

Some cultural events were also organized to the town citizens besides the cleaning of the town, beginning with the popularization of the English language during courses, the presentation of Wales and Northern Ireland and their culture and ending with the Christian music concert to the young people and classical music concert played by the stringed instrument sextet from Riga. The last concert produced a big lasting impression to the most of local government, journalists and people. During all the events money was collected to the deaf little three-year old boy for his operation. The charity attracted a big attention of the Press and local people who made donation generously for the boy could hear the music, which is natural for us all.

“I welcome this Christian initiative with all my heart and thank the youth of Adventist church for the help in collecting money”, Monika Giliene, the chairwoman of association of the deaf and the director of town social maintenance. “That is a perfect example to all of us.”

“All we wanted to do during that project was just to invite people to look at Christianity not from the theoretical point of view, but from practical one. That were very useful experiences for both the young people from church and for people not from church”, Mantas Kucinskas, the minister of Kedainiai Adventist church, told. “We testified our belief and way of life not literally but in our works. God blessed us so much and strongly that seldom we questioned where the Satan was,” the minister joked.

“This project raised the plank very high to every Christian of this town,” the preacher of Pentecost community told during the service of the Adventist church. “There is so much to think about organizing evangelizing programs in future. I want to thank you all for this beautiful initiative.”

Mantas Kučinskas,
Lithuanian Mission Field Communication Director