Stories in the Missional Journey of Bruce & Deborah Crowe

Exciting Update

IMG_0721 IMG_0696Over the past 2 weeks several breakthroughs have taken place for legalizing the cafe.  First, we received the national government ‘approval’ to convert the property and building to business officially – that took over $4k, 6 months and a lot of praying.  We’ve since submitted those documents to our local government and awaiting their ‘confirmation’ and stamp, could be any day, or a few weeks.

This means very soon, we can officially open and start using our super cool La Cimbali Italian Coffee machine and serving the only real Cappuccino, Lattes and other specialty drinks in the area.

Our remaining challenges center around the heating (Gas), electric (new meter) and inspection.  The most expensive and pressing is the heat.  Summer evaporated on us and winter seems to be moving in quickly.  As many of you know, there is only one gas company here in Ukraine, and they decided to shut off our gas in the middle of winter last year – rendering the building useless for 4 months.   All because we found (smelt) a gas leak outside on their pipes – and they wanted those documents we just received last week, to turn it back on.  We should have just lit a match! 🙂

Our gas furnace.. ready to heat the building and yummy pizza - but needs gas activated.

Our gas furnace.. ready to heat the building and yummy pizza – but needs gas activated.

Well fast forward to today.  We have received a $4,000 activation fee for the gas (includes new meter, labor, and essential documents).  The gas supply both heats our entire building, and the pizza oven.  Without gas, we will have to heat the building another way, and serve only coffee.  Timing is critical too – if we don’t get gas before the sub-zero temps hit, it will be impossible to get the system running correctly as it requires water.. last time I checked, water freezes rather easily at -20F.  There is no fighting this fee, trust me, I’ve met with the chiefs – their reply, ‘no money, no gas’.

While in Texas, our dear friends Art & Tracy Bradshaw took it upon themselves to raise, within the context of their Life Group, $1,000 towards this fee.  That leaves only $3,000 (a lot, but in the context of what has been invested over here it’s measurable!).

Our gas pipe, when we reported the leak, they shut of the valve and put this strange thing around it - if we tamper with it, we face penalties.

Our gas pipe, when we reported the leak, they shut of the valve and put this strange thing around it – if we tamper with it, we face penalties.

We have other start-up costs hitting us now – such as product purchases ($500), electric meter ($750), and taxes.  We’ll manage with these smaller items, but we’re fresh out of funds to it all by ourselves.  The most important right now is the gas – we have to get this building warm in the next 30 days so we can continue progress and open – need some income coming in!

If you are reading this and wondered how you could practically serve in foreign missions.. you know, you don’t need to necessarily uproot your family and move to another country.  You can partner with folks, like us.  More than ever, I see the practicality and godly design of working together – sharing in the investment and the rewards together.  With the benefits of technology, we can read, pray and give towards things that would otherwise be left unheard of and in many cases, unfinished.  Please consider, an amount of any kind towards these remaining start-up costs.  We’re looking at the finish line, and need a boost to cross it!

We want to open officially in October.  We think it’s finally possible.  But we need your help.  Please consider donating something, anything, on our secure donation link here !

Help us raise $3k!  My business, as well as monthly church support are being contributed regularly to keep things moving, we’re doing all we can!  This would be a wonderful infusion to get us moving.. and warm!

Remember, this building is a first and invaluable step in establishing a base of practical ministry and outreach in this town – we are filled with vision and anticipation beyond the operation of this Cafe.  The lives that will be impacted for our great God and ministries that will flow out of this place, to the nations – we believe the harvest is plenty.

Thanks for checking in – and thanks for giving!

Bruce & Deb


  1. Christina Mac Naughton

    Congrats Bruce and family on such an achievement!!
    God Bless you all

  2. Connie

    I’ll be praying for you, Bruce & Deb. God is faithful, and so are His people–as we’ve discovered. I can’t wait to hear about the provision. 😀

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