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TARTU ACADEMY OF THEOLOGY

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Fundraising Banquet in Estonia--Great Success

Siimon Haamer, dean of TAT

 

Last fall I began making plans for a fundraising banquet in Estonia. It seemed to us that Estonians were ready to accept the same kind of fundraising format that is very popular in the US. Although many people were very suspicious about this plan, I was willing to take the risk.

I shared this vision with our American friends and they were willing to offer matching funds for this event. In the end, there were $17,150 USD for matching. It was a very good challenge for Estonians and very important to make this event successful.

On May 11th we had a great banquet evening and we raised a total of $25,600 USD. This means we exceeded the challenge and covered all match funds. The total income of the banquet was $42,750 USD!

 

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Current Financial Situation

 

Income through the first five months of the year has been very encouraging. After a long period of time our running budget is balanced even though we now have our ambitious facility campaign. One main reason is the succesful fundraising banquet that we had in Estonia on May 11th. The money we raised will be distributed throughout the year and that’s why the full amount will not be presented in the accounting of our first five months. As of May 31st we had a $120 USD surplus.

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Current Status of Facility Fundraising Campaign

 

On April 28th we launched the TAT Facility Capital Campaign at Mount Calvary Lutheran Church in Excelsior, MN. In two weeks we raised $77,708 USD. That was very encouraging and we decided to go on with this project because such an excellent start for a campaign was again proof of God’s provision.

As of June 5th, we have raised $84,929 USD and we are still short $54,781 USD of the down payment that needs to be made by June 15th.

We need your help in this most difficult phase of our campaign!

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Estonian Evangelical Lutheran Church Bishop

Joel Luhamets About Facility Project

 

Planting new congregations is important but expanding a training center where pastors, workers for various church ministries, and lay leaders will be trained is even more future-focused action. In addition, this work is in harmony with Jesus’ Word: The harvest is plentiful, but the workers are few. Ask the Lord of the harvest, therefore, to send out workers into his harvest field (Luke 10:2).

 

Tartu Academy in this new development will be like a town built on a hill that cannot be hidden (Matthew 5:14).

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Facility plans for the Academy–Home of Hope

 

We tell you our story. Our first attempt to get a home for the Academy started in 1994. We were planning to renovate one old building in the city centrum as we had some hope to receive funds for this. We even put a plaque on the house wall July 4th, 2015 with the words, Unless the Lord builds the house, the builders labor in vain (Psalm 127:1). Hope was alive through several years, but we didn't get funds and we lost that perspective. The plaque stayed there for 17 years and people derided our trust in God, as the building decayed. During that same time, we investigated some other facility projects but they also didn't work out for us.

 

6 years ago, we gave up making any more plans and left our facility dreams to be guided only by God. The plaque with God's word was taken down from the building, by the realtor, as the house was renovated into a commercial apartment building. Now this plaque is in our office and is awaiting a new place where we can hang it because we know that God is building that house at the right time and in a mysterious way. And when the time is right He will guide us on that path. This is what we feel now: God is leading us and we just have to follow His guidance and take action.

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Current Financial Situation

 

First quarter of 2018 has not been bringing us out from a shortfall yet. As of April 10th we had a deficit of $12,000 USD. As we are starting now with a very serious task hoping to get funds for our facility project, we still hope very much that our regular income to cover our daily activities wont be decreasing. Our sincere appeal is not for you to substitute current giving with funding for the facility project because at the same time we have to continue our everyday work that building would be in a good use in the future.

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Our Generous Supporters in 2017

 

In this special issue of our newsletter, we are publishing the names of people and organizations who have supported TAT during 2017. Some people have donated anonymously and many through collections, so we may not know their names, but we are deeply grateful for all of you.

 

We have a long-term mission that needs committed workers for present and future generations. Our task is to raise a new generation of church leaders to guarantee continuity of this mission work among Estonians. We are still strongly influenced by 50 years of Soviet occupation, a time when Christianity was truly oppressed. We really need prayers and support from our brothers and sisters in Christ all over the world.

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Financial Overview and Projections

 

Contributions during December of 2017 helped us to meet almost all our financial commitments. Yet, we finished the year with a shortfall of $6,671 USD. This deficit was carried over into 2018.

 

Expenses have not been increased for 2018 but because of changes in the US Dollar exchange rate during the last few months it is necessary for us to recalculate with 1 USD = 0.76 EUR instead of 1 USD = 0.80 EUR.

 

During the last years there has been a decreased proportion of US gifts in our budget and we hope and are attempting to keep that process moving.

 

TAT Match Fund ended. New matching opportunities are available.

 

 

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Pastor Bob Nordvall

TAT representative in U.S.

National Field Coordinator of

East European Missions Network

 

cell: +1 701-391-0182

Skype: pastorbobnordvall

email: pastorbob(at)eemn.org

Pastor Siimon Haamer

Dean of Tartu Academy of Theology

 

 

cell: +372 515-9127

Skype: siimon7

email: siimon.haamer(at)teoloogia.ee