Monday, April 19, 2010

Explanation of Romanians' visa challenges

Edi "Pastor Eddie" Ciobanu, a young pastor from Romania now in Oregon, knows firsthand of the challenges the Romanians face in applying for and obtaining visas. The visa interview is the key.

Eddie explains:

"Statistically, one in four Romanians that apply for a US visa are denied. We pray that statistics will not apply here.

"Theoretically, Romanians have to prove they have solid reasons for returning back home after the US trip - family, job, property, money. What about the young man who just graduated from high school, does not a have a job, is not married and has no money in the bank? We pray that God would intervene.

"The law leaves it completely with the officer at the window to interpret the facts and make a decision - a totally subjective approach. We pray that those officers have a very good sleep tonight, have no fights with their spouses or major personal crises that could affect their "objectivity". God has His plan.

"The interviews are conducted individually, yet they are going there as a group. As a group they have more chances of getting a visa, as separate individuals they are potential immigrants. We pray that music will prevail!

"We pray for those whose visa request will inadvertently be denied - that the Lord will take away quickly the disappointment they cannot be with us, the frustration of being robbed of $130 - the interview fee - without being given a fair chance, the feeling they are second class, the puzzling task of processing how a denied visa is part of God's plan!"


Please keep these brothers and sisters in your prayers.

Romanians need our prayers Sunday and Monday

You may have heard that more than 100 Romanians are taking a step of faith to come to America by applying for visas. Most of this group are singers who plan to join OAMC for this summer's "Walk of Faith -- Mission to America."

The combined chorus is scheduled to sing at the camp meetings of Washington and Upper Columbia Conferences in Auburn and Walla Walla, respectively, as well as at least a festival concert with the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra in the Portland-Vancouver area before heading to the General Conference in Atlanta, Georgia.

This Sunday and Monday evenings are critical times when the interviews will be held. I understand that the interviews are "sudden death." The decision is made right then and there, and there is no appeal process.

Lou Wildman sent the following message to OAMC members:

Prayer Time for our Romanian Brothers

Our Romanian brothers have their Visa interviews Monday the 19th and Tuesday the 20th from 9 – 12 a.m. Romanian time. (11:00 p.m. to 2:00 a.m. our time, both Sunday and Monday nights). Please pray for them and their interviewers.

Prayer meetings will be held in Walla Walla and the Portland-Vancouver area.

Wherever you are, we ask that you pause to pray for our Romanian brothers, too.

Thank you and God bless.

Friday, April 16, 2010

Follow us on Facebook, Twitter

We're working on some new channels for communicating with you.

Check out our new Facebook fan page here.

You can also follow us on Twitter at @oamchorus.

If you're not familiar with Twitter, it allows you to follow others and communicate on your mobile device. It's the channel that's been taking the world by storm in only 140 characters. "Tweets" are limited to only 140 characters, so it's kind of like a quick "headline" way of communicating and pointing people to more information.

However, you can also follow online the "old-fashioned" way in a web browser at, Hoot Suite, at, TweetDeck and others.

Here's an example of how Twitter can be useful: When an entry is made on Facebook, a tweet is automatically sent to anyone "following" @oamchorus. If you're following on Twitter, you can click a link that takes you to the post on Facebook where you can read the rest of the post.

Sign up and it out!

And share it with your friends and family!

Sunday, April 4, 2010

OAMC Kicks Off New Season

Members of OAMC renewed friendships and made new friends as singers gathered at Lincoln Academy in Salem, Oregon, for the first rehearsal of the year.

We're anticipating that this year will be an exciting one, as the Lord has presented several opportunities to sing to new audiences.

First, we're especially excited that a number of Romanians, who sang with us while we were in Romania last year, will be joining us for two weeks in June. A few miracles need to happen for this all to come to fruition as they face the challenges of obtaining visas, as well as funding their travel. Please pray with us that doors will open for our Romanian brothers to be able to join us for our June singing engagements.

We're anticipating singing for the Washington Conference and Upper Columbia Conference camp meetings in Auburn and College Place, Washington in June.

An exciting opportunity to reach new audiences in the Portland Metro area is a planned concert with the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra, a door that has opened because our Romanian brothers will be singing with us.

We will also be singing at the General Conference session on June 25. With the Romanians and others we're inviting to join us from other parts of the U.S and the world, we plan to present an international chorus as a reflection of the world church.

Watch this blog and the OAMC website at for updates as they become available.