“It is not cold enough for Oleg here in Minnesota, so he leaves for Siberia next Sunday. Let’s pray for him!” – announced our priest jokingly after the service. It is not, in fact, that much colder in Russia these days, and I feel well prepared for the trip. What does indeed give me the chills is the temperature of the political relations between our two countries that is most reminiscent of the Cold War years. I will have to be extra cautious not to engage in any potential confrontations or heated discussion with my audiences and to concentrate on the most important and meaningful subject of my presentations: the Word of God.[Read more…]
I am back in MN… one day early than expected. It did not occur to me until I landed in Chicago that I would actually gain a whole extra day of my life if I keep going east from the Far East of Russia all the way back home. Well, I needed that day to recover from a very busy travelling and teaching schedule of the last three weeks.
Two classes in the city of Bryansk – one in the Orthodox Diocese Center and one in a Baptist church – presented an opportunity to try my new material on friendly audiences. Most recent archeological findings (first publication in August of 2017) of the rare chalkstone vessel workshop discovered in Israel’s north provided a tantalizing link to the New Testament story of the Wedding at Cana, where Jesus performed his first miracle – transforming water held in six stone containers into wine. I loved to see the faces in my audience enthusiastically responding to this new evidence of historicity of the Gospel. [Read more…]