[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]

Missionary Q's Today

Ukraine, 5/8/99
Dear John,

At 07:04 AM 5/3/99 -0500, you wrote:
>What is your mission like?  Do you have a school?  An orphanage?
>Do you do circuit riding?

I finished Reformed Theol. Seminary (in my hometown, Jackson, MS) in 1977
and was ordained in 1978 in the PCA. I worked as a Presbyterian missionary
church-planter in Lisbon, Portugal from 1979 to 1993. We began a group of
churches there which formed into a presbytery and continues. I earned my Dr.
of Ministries degree in 1986 and became adjunct professor of the masters
department of the Portuguese Bible Institute.

However, when things opened up in the former USSR, we learned Russian and
moved to Odessa, Ukraine, a beautiful city similar to New Orleans, right on
the Black Sea. We have a team of 8 people in Odessa, and more throughout the
country. To our joy, the work here has moved very rapidly, resulting in 5
new churches in just 5 years!! And God has raised up leaders! So we have
responded to all this by first, setting up a Humanitarian Aid society called
Renewal Enterprises, which has brought in 6 containers of Medical aid and
distributed it to orphanages and hospitals. But now we're seeking more and
more to do it through the church, so they'll learn to do it themselves and
take the central role. [This concept of self-reliance was first put forward
by a now-famous colleague of Quarterman in the China mission: Nevius.]

I was the first of our group to arrive, so I have done the circuit-riding,
helped organize our school and church, visited the orphanages and hospitals,
etc. Today, however, I've had to move up higher, and I organized the Odessa
Presbyterian Seminary to train the leaders of these churches. I teach and
administer this school, traveling with them for 6 weeks/year to Kiev. I also
travel around on busses and trains to visit these students who are ALREADY
functioning as pastors! They're a great bunch -- including former communists
and spies! But the Gospel has truly transformed them. It is a joy to see
this evidence of Christ's work today.

So I stay BUSY!! In addition, our Odessa congregation (100 weekly) has just
been blessed with the return to their OWNERSHIP of a historic building on
the national register (like Midway church, only larger). It's worth
somewhere around $6 Million, is beautiful and highly fitted to their
mission, but it needs about $1 Million in repair because of damage done by
the Soviets. (They converted it to a puppet theater, then abandoned it.) So
I'm helping them raise the funds. 

I just produced a professional video about it, and I'd be glad to send it
free to anyone wanting a copy.
I'm coming to the States all summer, travelling all over the Southeast. I'd
be glad to meet anyone to explain more. 

By the way, on our trip to England last June, we visited Thame, Oxon, and
were delighted to find that a church where the Quartermans played such a
leading role continues to be today a very active, vital church. In order to
see the Quarterman tombs there, we had to clear out a section of their
Christian bookstore! The history of the church says that the tomb of Thomas
Quarterman used to be called the "Poor Corner" because the offerings for the
poor were laid there -- and it continues to be a spot of vibrant actvity.
Praise God! I truly loved the town of Thame. 

We also visited St. Mary's church in Chalgrove, and made some brass rubbings
in the chancel. The pastor told me they were Quartermans, but I have some
doubts. I'm still trying to decipher the Old Latin inscriptions! Do you know
anything about them? I also noted the Quarterman plaques there. The info on
you web page was really helpful, since I had a taxi waiting impatiently, and
I only have one hour to see and film it all. It was FUN!  I'll tell you
later about my eventful trip to Rycote Chapel.

By the way, if anyone wants to get involved in the work over here, they can
write for more info to Mission to the World (a 501(c)(3) organization, by
the way), at P O Box 29765, Atlanta, GA 30359

Thanks for your request for info. Sorry the answer was so complicated!

For the Kingdom of Christ,
Clay Quarterman
Odessa, Ukraine