“Enter His gates with thanksgiving and His court with praise; give thanks to Him and praise His name. For the Lord is good and His love endures forever; His faithfulness continues through all generations.” Psalm 100: 4-5

Pastors’ Blogs

Calming the storms

One time Jesus got into a boat with his disciples on the Sea of Galilee, and began to cross to the other side. A windstorm arose with such violent force that the waves broke into the boat, filling it with water. The disciples awakened Jesus, who was asleep in the stern of the boat, and…

The Lord reigns in righteousness

When Esther and I were studying Russian in Ukraine in the mid 1990s, we had a discussion with our language teacher about the challenges Ukraine was facing after the fall of Communism. The economy was in shambles, infrastructures were crumbling, organized crime was on the rise. As a result, there was a great deal of uncertainty about the future, and, with it,…

The value of your soul

The Dolmabahce Palace is spectacularly situated on the Bosphorus. A visit leaves you awestruck by the beauty of the architecture, the ornate rooms with their gigantic chandeliers and the variety of artistic decorations. You almost feel overwhelmed by the extravagance of it all. If you would dare to compare it with your own home you could easily feel that your own life…

A letter out of Africa…

This week I received this letter from a single mother with two children: Good morning pstor Benjamin! I am the Ivorian woman with two children you very helped in Istanbul you and throw IMMP and IOM organisations. How are you and your family ? I welcomed in Abidjan town at  Ivory Coast Airport on This Thuesday at 23 o’clock. Now we are in my…

A Faded Fresco…

  Last summer  I visited a church filled with frescos depicting different biblical scenes.  The frescos were in a bad condition and it was difficult to recognise the scenes- even with the help of  information cards. One such card read ‘Agony in the Garden’ but  all I could see were some marks in different faded colours. The church was a marvelous building…

The price of a bowl of lentil stew…

This past week, along with everything else that was happening in the world, the highest price ever was paid for a single fish. A large bluefin tuna, valued for making the finest sushi, was sold for $736,000 at a fish market in Tokyo. This week I also read how Esau, the son of Isaac, bought a bowl of lentil stew from his…

‘I spend my Sundays differently’

  Barbeque chicken, spicy bulgur, salad and white Turkish bread – it was the monthly community meal and the garden was filled with the happy noise of children playing and the sound of adults chatting in a variety of languages or English accents!   After the morning worship it was time for fellowship and conversation around a meal.  On Monday everybody would…

Whoever is kind to the poor lends to the Lord

Famous Turkish author Orhan Pamuk wrote: ‎”To be traveling through the middle of a city as great, historic and forlorn as Istanbul, and yet to feel the freedom of the open sea–that is the thrill of a trip along the Bosphorus.” The Bosphorus strait divides the city of Istanbul and provides much needed breathing space for the city of 14 million people.…

Adornment

Whenever I leave my building I immediately step into a street where between a hundred thousand and a million people walk every day. It is not just local people who walk along Istiklal but people from all over the world and all seem to enjoy the experience. The sights and sounds of Istiklal attract a wide range of different people adorned in a…

Highlight

“What was the highlight of your visit to Turkey?” we asked a couple who was part of a team visiting us for two weeks. There time here had included visiting places like the amazing rocky landscape of Cappadocia, the spectacular travertines at Pamukkale and the fascinating ruins of the ancient city of Ephesus not to mention exploring the rich cultural history of…