Roma Voices Project (August Newsletter)

Greetings from Slovakia – we’d like to invite you to be part of an exciting project we’ve been working on that’s just been officially launched! 

If you’ve received our newsletters in the past, you know about the different recording work Jon has done in the past couple of years.  We’ve been privileged to meet and work alongside some amazing musicians in the eight years we’ve lived here.  So many times, as we’ve been listening to Roma musicians in worship, on the street or in someone’s living room, we’ve thought, “It’s a shame no one else gets to hear this amazing music!”

Then we realized – other people can hear this music, we can help make it possible.  That’s where the idea for the Roma Voices Project came about.

For us, this project isn’t just about sharing a few songs or a playlist – the songs are amazing, but the project is bigger than that.  It’s a way to help the world hear the voice of the Roma people.  Music is one of the primary ways Roma experience the world and express themselves.  This project, through songs, documentary videos and interviews, seeks to explore the story of these beautiful and marginalized people through their music.

Roma Voices Project is underway – we’ve already begun releasing songs, videos and stories on the project website, and we’re releasing content weekly. 

We hope you’re as excited as we are about this project!  Would you join the project and help spread the word?  Here’s how you can help:

VISIT the website – go to www.romavoices.eu.  Start listening to the songs, watching the videos and reading the stories.  (Note – if the website comes up in a different language, look for the U.S. flag in the top right corner)  

FOLLOW the Project so you’re notified when new materials are released.  You can get notified through email (sign up on the website), on Twitter (@RomaVoices), Instagram (@romavoicesproject) or on our Facebook Page.

SHARE the Project with your friends – send them the website address and share the links on your different social media platforms.  We’d love to see even more people get engaged and hear about the beautiful Roma people!

Want to know more?  Follow this link to an article about the Roma Voices Project, or view the short video trailer below.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8dvb5cji8RU

In Other News…

This July, we celebrated eight years living and serving in Slovakia… we’re thankful God brought us here, and thankful that you’re with us on the journey!

Our Student.Go intern Gloria Roy concluded her series of English conversation lessons in July. Besides helping with English, she built some great friendships local learners and partners. Thanks Gloria!

Though we could not travel as planned this summer, we’ve used the time to have people in our home, to help plan and lead a church youth retreat, and to teach English at a children’s VBS camp in central Slovakia. We’re grateful for the opportunities this very different summer has afforded us, and that the conditions in Slovakia remain relatively good in regards to COVID-19.

We’re also thankful for continued health in the midst of these times. In a couple of recent videos, we’ve been asked what has been most challenging for us in this time. Our answer – what we’ve lost. We lost a dear family friend to COVID-19 a few days ago, and this weighs heavily on our hearts. But we feel other losses, too – the loss of “normal life,” of summer plans to visit family, of three mission teams scheduled for this year, and of several ministry opportunities that have been canceled.

We pray with you as you adjust to a world that looks vastly different than we imagined it. We encourage you to name and grieve your own losses in this time. It doesn’t matter how your loss compares to someone else’s – we’re all lost something, and it’s important to acknowledge it.

Prayer Requests

Please continue to pray for our work in the village of Cakanovce. We’ve visited twice this summer to play with the school children and talk with the adults about how life has changed during the pandemic. We hope to expand our work there in the fall, but it depends on the COVID conditions and the cooperation of the local government.

Please pray with us about our ministry this fall. Because of COVID restrictions, we’re not sure what work (if any) we’ll be able to do in the schools. Pray that God would show us open doors in the right places to re-invest our time and energy.

Grace and Peace to you!

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