United Methodists Building Church in Dolný Kubín, Slovakia

The Rev. Patrik Hipp and his wife, Zuzana Hipp (kneeling, second and third from left), pose with a small group of worshippers of the United Methodist mission congregation in Dolný Kubín, Slovakia. Photo courtesy of Rev. Patrik Hipp.

United Methodists were confused by a 2011 census that showed 33 people in the Slovakian town of Dolný Kubín who listed their religion as United Methodist. Nobody knew who they were and there had never been a Methodist congregation in the town near Poland.

But these days, the Rev. Patrick Hipp is building a congregation in the town. And one day, with God’s help, there will be 33 United Methodists in Dolný Kubín.

Dolný Kubín is a two-hour drive from Senec, where Hipp was minister to a new congregation. Through his work in Senec, he made contact with people from Dolný Kubín.

Hipp said he looked out the window one day in Senec and saw a mother with children on the playground.

“I thought: We need such families to come to our congregation. And when I asked myself why we didn’t have such families, it became clear to me that someone should talk to this woman about God’s love,” he said.

He asked his wife, Zuzana, to go to the playground and talk to the woman. His wife asked: “Why me?”

“You are a woman, after all. Please go to her and speak to her as one woman to another,” he said.

Zuzana Hipp talked to the woman in the park about God’s love, invited her to come to the church – and she actually came. Together the two women read the Bible, prayed, exchanged experiences and learned.

The woman’s husband wasn’t happy about her involvement in the church, but she remained faithful and eventually found the courage to invite her husband to come to the church himself, Hipp said. He said the husband came and to everyone’s surprise, he liked what he experienced and eventually started off on the path of believing.

This couple often had people from Dolný Kubín visiting them and they began to talk about their belief in God to their visitors, Hipp said. The visitors came to the church service and were touched by it.

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Source: United Methodist News