Country

Bulgaria

The Spiritual Need In Bulgaria

Offering a combination of mountainous and coastal terrain, Bulgaria is among the most beautiful of the Balkan nations. It is also a cultural melting pot, steeped in rich Greek and Ottoman influence. Bulgaria’s population of 6 million people is mostly ethnic Bulgarians identifying as Bulgarian Orthodox. The largest minority groups are Turks, who are almost exclusively Muslim, and Roma, who are also primarily Muslim or Orthodox. Evangelicals comprise just 2% of the total population, and a number of their churches have no pastor. Among the sparse amount of men serving as pastors, many have little or no formal theological training. A great need exists for missionaries with skills in church planting and theological training, as well as for mentors and teachers in the areas of children, youth, and music ministries.

Because of the influence of the Bulgarian and Turkish cultures upon one another, people who grasp Bulgarian culture have natural inroads into the Middle East, Central Asia, and Asia Minor. The Bulgarian business community has cultural and historical ties to former Soviet countries, which can facilitate outreach to places where it might be challenging for a North American to travel.

ABWE in Bulgaria

Most Bulgarians consider themselves Christians because they were baptized into the Orthodox Church as infants. The prevailing belief is that salvation comes through adherence to the traditions of the church. In divergence from this ingrained, ritualist lifestyle, there is a growing number of “Christian Atheists,” who identify as Christian solely on the basis of nationality and culture yet deny the existence of God.

ABWE is working with Bulgarian Baptist Churches to introduce people to a relationship with Jesus Christ, nurture them to truly know God’s word, and assist them in serving in the church and sharing their faith with others. It is our goal to impact unreached communities through creative evangelism, planting churches and guiding believers to greater spiritual depth. Our aim is to equip a new generation of servant leaders to advance the church in Bulgaria and beyond. Ministering to young people in Bulgaria is crucial step toward this goal.

ABWE’s first team arrived in Bulgaria in February 2014 and has since assumed leadership of the first Baptist church plant in one of its cities. Our missionaries have also started a Christian bookstore/reading room as a point of contact and community outreach. The team is looking for spiritually mature, self-starting teammates to join them in witness to their university town and branching into nearby communities.

Our ministry in Bulgaria is expanding as we continue to partner with existing churches in church-planting efforts. The team is also involved in music ministry, including starting a church music school, and an outdoor men’s ministry. Will you help us in these important endeavors for the gospel?

We’d love to get to know you and discuss how God is calling you.