Submitted by the Rev. Bob Allard
Since 1998 the Christian Education Center in Martin, Slovakia, has trained Christian workers for the 21st century. Two instructors from the Center, Drs. Michael Valco and Katarina Valcova, are teaching at Roanoke College in Salem, Virginia, in the Department of Religion during a professor’s sabbatical.
Bishop Richard Graham and the Rev. Bob and Elsa Allard, synod Global Mission Committee members, joined the Valcos for lunch in Woodbridge on a Sunday in March to explore ways to strengthen the Metro D.C. Synod’s ties with members of our Companion Synod in Slovakia. Exciting ways to do so were discussed.
Rest on a bench while awaiting arrival of his lunch companions took a turn when Bishop Graham noticed three women in distress. Their SUV had a rear flat. “They had hoped just anyone would step forward to help,” said Pr. Allard who came upon the scene of Bishop Graham tackling the spare tire. “They just couldn’t believe that a bishop in his clerics walked over.”
With the Valcos, and with the distraught motorists, “’Praise God’ was the main topic of conversation,” said Pr. Allard.