Thursday, June 8, 2017

Pentecost Monday outing to Hollókő

Young couple in native costume in the village
This is a photo from our Pentecost Monday (June 5) outing to Hollókő castle and historic village, up in northern Hungary.  Our full photo album is here if you'd like to see more.

We had already visited there last year as a part of cultural re-entry after being in the US for 10 months, but a group from the Karcag Baptist Church circle were going for the holiday and we went with them. It was a beautiful, bonding day with our friends,  leaving super-early to meet them in Karcag, going on from there on a chartered bus.

The folks at Hollókő were doing a lot of re-enactments in full costume, very dramatic. In the morning there was a ceremony welcoming all of us to the castle..."you came as free men, you may depart in peace as free men!"  (I was glad to hear that.)

There were some pretty warlike confrontations on the village streets between marauding bands of warriors from different parts of Hungary, as well as some Turks. One squabble was over some captive maidens, but after threatening speeches, saber rattling, guns fired into the air, and double-dog-daring to meet later by the castle gate, it all turned out OK.

Hungarian history is very long and interesting -- often tragic -- and learning more about it helps us to better understand the people we live among and minister to.  

Pray with us that God will move in a mighty way in Hungary, showing the people that He loves them and has had a purpose for them since the beginning of time; ask that they will turn to Him with all their hearts.

Friday, June 2, 2017

Goodbye to May, hello to June

Greetings, friends!

Well, we're two days into June now, and I want to pause for a moment and thank those of you who prayed with us through the May prayer calendar.  Each of the prayer requests were carefully chosen because of their strategic importance in the work here and because of what is happening on the ground.  We'll be updating you as prayers are answered and things continue to progress.

Here's a link to our latest prayer update, hot off the press: IMB Eastern Hungary Prayer Update - May 2017

You can subscribe to get your own email copy each month using the link at the top left of that page, and you can also request the Hathcock family's weekly "Salt and Light" updates at  We'd love to share more with you about how God is working - He is worthy of all praise!

Thanks so much for praying with us and for us, and for the ministries in Hungary - we appreciate your involvement and want you to know that we consider you part of our team.  Please let us know how we can pray for you and your family, also.

Saturday, May 20, 2017

Outreach and training in western Ukraine

Please pray for Gary this week as he serves in western Ukraine. Today he is doing a one-day Grain Game Bible camp for youth, demonstrating how it is done so that the local believers can learn to use these creative methods for reaching kids in the 10-15 age range. For the next week he will be working together with a volunteer from the US doing street evangelism and training believers in how to share their faith.

Pray that God will be glorified in all that is done, and that the outreach and training will bear fruit for the Kingdom.

Saturday, April 29, 2017

Prayer is vital - join us in May month of prayer

It's time for our 15th annual 31 Days of Prayer for Eastern Hungary!   Join us by downloading your copy of the May prayer calendar and praying each day for the special prayer requests. Feel free to copy the calendar to share with your church, Sunday school class, or prayer group.

Download the prayer calendar in your choice of PDF or Word document.

Thank you for praying with us for the people of eastern Hungary and ethnic Hungarians beyond the borders! If you would like to learn more, check out our website and opt-in to our prayer updates.

Monday, April 17, 2017

Easter Sunday in Újléta

We pray that you all had a wonderful Easter celebration. We are so thankful for the sacrifice of Jesus on the cross and His glorious resurrection!

Easter afternoon we were invited by our friend and national partner Eduárd to serve with him at the small Baptist church in Újléta, which is about a 45-minute drive from our home in Debrecen.  The people at the church are very wonderful and welcoming, and it is always a joy to be with them.  Gary preached about the question, "does the world see hope in us?"  People all around us are in such need of real hope, and our lives should be lived in such a way that they can see the hope of Christ in us even in hard times.  Living out the new life that He gives us allows us to have true joy and peace!  I am thankful.

Pray for the small group of believers in Újléta, that they would be encouraged to keep living out their faith and being a witness in their town.  They told me Sunday that it is very hard for them to see so few younger people interested in knowing the Lord and coming to church.  Some have even suggested they should close the church down.  Ask the Lord to break down walls of indifference in the community and draw people to Himself.

Thursday, April 13, 2017

Urgent prayer needed for potential church plant

Calling all praying friends.... 

Unexpected opposition has arisen to the new church we believe that God is leading us to plant in a town here in eastern Hungary, and permission to rent space in the community is being denied. Please pray with us for grace in the eyes of the authorities, for changed hearts, and that the Gospel will not be hindered.

Thank you very much for lifting up this situation!

Thursday, March 23, 2017

Divine encounters in everyday places

Debrecen train station waiting area

Monday I took a trip to Budapest that I had considered "unplanned." As it turned out, it had apparently not been unplanned on God's part!  Throughout the day I had encounter after encounter with ladies who were either needing some help or just looking for a friendly person to chat with.

The most in-depth conversation I had was with a very sweet lady, "I," who had the seat across from me on the train.  She told me later that she didn't normally talk with people on public transportation, but in spite of that we immediately struck up a conversation that lasted the several hours it took to reach the capital city.  We talked about music, pets, family, and life--the good times and the bad.  When I brought the Lord into the conversation she didn't shut me down, but she also didn't show herself to be a person with a real relationship with God.

Pray for "I" and others like her who surround us in the everyday moments of life.  Ask the Lord to help us see these people with His eyes; ask Him to prompt us to give them a smile and start a conversation, to share the Hope we have in Christ. Pray that "I" and I will be able to deepen our friendship, and that soon she will come to know Jesus as her best friend and Savior of her soul.