The European Roma Rights Center (ERRC) reported that in Romania, being a Gypsy is the worst social stigma. Generally speaking, Romanian strongly look down upon the Romani people. Mădălin Voicu, a popular Musician and Politician in Romania, himself of Romani descent, said of his own people:
“Our gypsies are stupid. They could at least be crafty but they aren’t. They are just primitives and they manage to irritate the entire society which is already watching them closely […] They run through the country and Europe barefoot, slimy and dirty, wearing clothes which are more likely to disgust you than make you feel sorry for them […] Begging, soliciting and being disorganized will never bring them any advantages.”
If this Romani pronounces these strong words about his own people, do you think the average Romanian thinks any better of them? The Romani people make up the biggest minority in Romania. It seems like that are the outcasts of society. They are not allowed live in the same vicinity as Romanians, so they have their own villages, their own gypsy guettos.
But, at the risk of sounding trite, I’ll say, THE GYPSIES NEED THE LORD. I praise God there are men and women of God who accept the call to preach the gospel among the Romani people. Of course, ninety-nine percent of the time, these are Romani pastors feeling drawn to evangelize their own people. But there’s nothing wrong with that. It’s natural.
[I do know of one case where a Romanian man felt called to preach the good news in a Romani village and to start a Romani church. I say, hats off to this brave, compassionate man! I visited this devout pastor’s home several years ago. He was very sick at that time and I had the privilege of praying over him.]
Praise International is very honored to sponsor several Romani pastors who are preaching the good news and starting churching among the Romani people. Decebal and Nicoleta is one of those pastoral couples.
My wife and I had the pleasure of being a guests in their home. It was a wonderful experience to drive up this rugged dirty road and to visit the mountainous village of Ciuta, situated in the foothills of the Transylvanian Alps. The village Main Street was a narrow, bumpy dirt road. Many people came out of their humble abodes to see our car. It was very rare to see cars up in their village. Plenty of horse-drawn wagons.
Pastor Decebal took us to the end of “main street” and there on the right were two churches, a small old Church and next it was a much bigger Church building under construction. These are the churches pictured below. God is using Decebal and Nicoleta to reach the Romani people of Ciuta village. I thank God for giving them a burden to reach their own people for the Lord. Pray that God give them lots of perseverance and compassion and strength, that God anoint this ministry so that all the people in the village might be saved!