About the Need
The nation of Lithuania has fewer than 1% evangelical Christians and has one of the highest suicide rates on the globe, at 38.6 deaths per 100,000 people, according to the World Health Organization. Millennials in Lithuania have abandoned the state religion and become agnostic. They are raising their children without any knowledge of God, not even enough to be agnostic. Lithuania is a nation that needs the hope that comes from a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. The IMB has only one couple in the whole country as missionaries. They greatly need our help.
The SBC of Virginia is planting a new church in Panevėžys, Lithuania, a city of almost 100,000 people and with no evangelical presence. You and your church can be a vital part of spreading the Gospel throughout Lithuania.
To read a note from Jim & Susan Austin, click: READ MORE
- Population: 3 million
- Less than 1% evangelical Christians
- 4th highest suicide rate in the world
- Panevėžys is the 5th largest city in Lithuania
How To Get Involved
- Attend the IMB Missions Meeting on April 26, 2016 in Glen Allen. | REGISTER
- Encourage church members to receive training in church planting skills.
- Encourage church members to receive training in teaching English as a Foreign Language (EFL). | MORE INFO
- Pray for the SBC of Virginia mission to Lithuania.
- Pray that SBC of Virginia missionaries will effectively engage the people of Panevėžys with the Gospel.
- Pray that the SBC of Virginia missionaries will encounter a person of peace as they enter the city.
- Pray for inmates at the Panevėžys Women’s Prison who are incarcerated with their children.
- Pray that the SBC of Virginia missionaries will meet followers of Jesus in Panevėžys with whom to fellowship and co-labor.
- Pray that the SBC of Virginia missionaries will meet non-believers who are open to hearing and responding to the Gospel.
- Pray that God will call a pastor for the Panevėžys church.
- Give through the SBC of Virginia to help purchase worship and other equipment for the new church. | MORE INFO
- Give to the SBC of Virginia to help send members of churches participating in the Lithuania partnership on short term mission trips.
- Give to the SBC of Virginia to help purchase equipment and supplies in Lithuania for use on mission trips.
- Give to the SBC of Virginia to help purchase and build a playground in the city center as a demonstration of the SBC of Virginia’s long term commitment to the people of Panevėžys.
Contact Eddie Urbine, firstname.lastname@example.org for details regarding giving.
- Explore the Lithuania mission by sending 1-2 members with an existing mission team to see first-hand how the mission teams operate.
- When God calls the church, become a member of the Lithuania partnership and send 1-2 short term mission teams to Lithuania each year.
- Coordinate the work of mission teams with the on-going work of the other SBC of Virginia churches.
- Send your pastor to Panevėžys for up to 12 months to oversee the SBC of Virginia church plant effort.
- Volunteer to care for the children of church members while they are on mission in Lithuania.
- Volunteer to care for mission team members’ pets, lawns, etc. while they are away on mission.
- Send small handmade or special gifts with your mission team to give to the people of Panevėžys.
To learn more about partnering with Lithuania through vision trips, missions trips, serving with the Panevėžys church plant, or in a “sending” capacity, contact:
Jim & Susan Austin
SBC of Virginia Lithuania Missions Coordinators
The first time we told someone that we were going to Lithuania, they asked, “what state is that in?”
Though this small country in Eastern Europe does not often make the news, Lithuania is a country rich in culture and tradition. It is also a country rising from the remnants of political and historic upheaval. As Lithuania moves forward in freedom, young adults are seeking new ways to build their economy on the European stage. Many are searching inwardly to find purpose for their hopes and dreams. God called us to Lithuania for the last four years to help these young people rebuild their country through English and business training, and to share Jesus Christ with them as the only One who can satisfy their longing for purpose.
From the first time we stepped foot in Lithuania, we understood why God had put these wonderful people on our hearts. We discovered that there are so few followers of Jesus in Lithuania, because so few Lithuanians have heard the good news about God’s love and grace. They have made their own rules for living a good life without God. Lithuania is a beautiful country with an ancient culture and a gracious people, yet it is a country with little hope or happiness because they do not yet know that God greatly desires to have a personal relationship with them. When they do hear the Gospel, they listen thoughtfully and many say, “I knew there was something more than I had been told.” Lithuanians have found that religion is a poor substitute for knowing God.
That is why we are very much excited that God is now opening a door in Panevėžys, Lithuania where the SBC of Virginia has been invited to plant a church. We invite you to join us in spreading the gospel in Panevėžys, and to pray about how you might be called to respond to this opportunity God has set before us. If God is calling you to pray for the SBC of Virginia mission to Lithuania, we hope you will pray fervently and frequently. If God is calling you to give to support the SBC of Virginia mission to Lithuania, we hope you will give generously and gleefully. If God is calling you to go to Panevėžys to share the good news of God’s redemptive love, we hope you will go with intentionality and intensity.
Jim & Susan
To learn more about contributing financially to the Lithuania partnership, contact:
CFO & Director of Ministry Support, SBC of Virginia