MIWC Europe Reaches into Scandinavia
Finland summer camps in progress
In late 2015, MIWC Europe Director Sergii Bilokin uprooted his growing family from Ukraine and settled them into Estonia to begin to reach MIWC's ministry into the Baltic region. From the Baltics (Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania), Bilokin also looked north and visualized extending the relationships he was dedicated to building into Scandinavia.
"Those small countries are in my heart too," he said.
The ministry in the land of a thousand lakes is quite complicated, local pastors explained to Bilokin. People there are not interested in Christ, but music is still a key to their hearts. Finnish people enjoy good music and are often eager to join or listen to any musical activities.
With this in mind, Bilokin (pictured) found it took time to build the bridges needed to connect with the Finnish evangelical movement. They have no official union, but instead harbor a good fellowship between churches where communications occurs.
While meeting some Finnish Baptist and Free Evangelical pastors last year through Estonian friends, Bilokin found them interested to learn how it was possible to use music more actively and thoughtfully in a camp ministry.
Earlier this year, he visited a church in Savonlinna, Finland and continued to make friends among Finnish churches while learning their culture and ministry needs.
Those Finnish pastors and Bilokin joined together and planned two different camps for kids and teens offering musical instrument training, voice training and choral singing.
The team invited some Finnish music leaders and some Estonians to participate as well, resulting in violin, recorder, piano, guitar and vocal classes among those being offered.
The camps will take place near the cities of Helsinki and Tampere during the month of July.