April 2, 2014

In 2011, Samaritan’s Purse helped renovate a drug rehabilitation center in Serbia. Now, former addicts who have graduated from the center’s program are being baptized—proving that the real story sometimes comes long after the project is complete. Here’s an update from our partners, Danny and Vera.

We had another exciting evening on Saturday, March 22. Seventeen people were baptized as a public testimony of their faith in Jesus Christ. It’s hard to believe that nine of them were men who were heavily-addicted to drugs just a while ago.

As we watched these and others testify about their faith in Christ, all of us rejoiced with singing and shouts of joy. It was a great celebration. “Those who look to Him are radiant; their faces are never covered with shame.” Psalm 34:5, NIV

Neven was a heroin addict for over ten years. He finished the program three years ago and is on our church’s worship team now.

Veljko finished the rehab program and is now helping in the center. He has no desire to do anything else! God totally changed his life and he wants to help others.

Vuk used his amazing talent while being baptized by singing a song to Jesus who has restored his life. No more addiction, but rather freedom to sing, praise, and enjoy life!

Dusan was looking forward to this special moment. “If everyone laughs at me that I follow Jesus now, it is fine with me. I am staying with Him,” he said.

Daniel knew nothing about God and was on his way to totally destroying his life with drugs. His parents came to the baptism service at church and said, “Our son is a totally different man!”

Branko said that for 20 years, his god was heroin. Now he serves the only true, living God.

Goran was so skinny and lost when he arrived at the center. It was his last chance. God gave him new life, a new heart, and he is spiritually and physically changed. He first came full of anger—but now he radiates love!

Bane is shy and quiet, but he had no problem speaking loud and clear about how he has become alive, free, and full of joy: Jesus!

Zoran is 54 years old and had lost everything due to drugs and alcohol. He was homeless. Now he has a home, a family, and a future…forever.


Moments like these bring it all into perspective. We do not labor in vain, nor do you pray and give in vain. God takes it all and multiplies it. We feel blessed and privileged.