Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Missionary Spotlight: Larry & Debby Thompson in Hungary

Larry and Debby have been reaching into the hearts of Communist countries for 30 years. Larry is a native of Jackson and attended Mississippi State University where he met his wife, Debby. “We have the all-American romance; football player met cheerleader at chapel during a Campus Crusade for Christ prayer meeting, fell in love, got married, and went to Poland,” Larry said.

After graduating from college, Larry and Debby were married and spent two years in New England. During this time, they were invited to lead a Campus Crusade for Christ team to Communist Poland in 1977. Larry and Debby along with their baby daughter went undercover as students and later as business owners to spread the word of Christ. During this time, Larry was interrogated twice by the Polish KGB for an entire day. The Thompsons spent eight years in Poland. During this time, Larry and Debby were able to use the “Jesus” film to share the Gospel with seven million people and start university ministries in five cities.

The Thompsons moved from Poland to Germany, where Larry served as regional director for the Eastern Bloc which included the countries from Poland to Albania. After the fall of the Soviet Union in 1994, the Thompson family moved to Budapest, Hungary, which is the Eastern Europe and Russia Campus Crusade for Christ headquarters.

Larry currently serves as the Director of Affairs for Eastern Europe and Russia, which spans eighteen countries and eleven time zones. They currently have university ministries in over 100 cities on more than 300 campuses. “Since 1990, we have been able to share Christ, using the Jesus film, university ministries, and churches, with 150 million people,” said Larry.

“Debby and I reflect on the hardships over the years, that are many and very real to us, yet we can truly look back and say, 'The One who calls you is faithful and He will do it.' (1 Thessalonians 5:24) We praise God for His faithfulness to us for these thirty years. As you face the challenges of living by faith, please be encouraged to trust Him, and you too will look back in thirty years to see His faithfulness.”

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