Eastern Europe Puts Bibles into Schools – with Encouraging Results

Once upon a time, the United States openly and proudly professed “One Nation Under God,” in our homes and in our individual lives. No one disputed our Judeo-Christian faith heritage. Children prayed and read the Bible at home and in schools, were raised with foundational morals; in turn, we cultivated an increasingly outstanding society through honor, hard work and respect for God and others. We weren’t a perfect nation by any delusional train of thought, but we openly believed in the sovereign God of the Bible. Because of this historic foundation of faith, countless Americans were able to live in a thriving nation that offered compassionate outreach and humanitarian aid to less fortunate regions of the world.

Today, we are living in an America that denies its heritage, belief in, and dependence upon God. This is reflected in our biblical illiteracy, our lack of unity, the acceptance and encouragement of evil, and in outright opposition to biblical truths. We are currently witnessing egregious evils beyond our comprehension—the murdering of unborn babies, human trafficking of children, indoctrination to destroy all righteous innocence, a seemingly irreparable divide among the population, and an all-consuming obsession with technology that has overridden the motivation to work on and maintain healthy relationships. 

Eastern Europe’s Example of Growing Unity, Societal Progression and Reverence

A recent Christian Post article shared news about Tristan Azbej, the Hungarian Secretary of State for the Aid of Persecuted Christians and the Hungary Helps Program touting his country’s quest to “implement the social teachings of the Bible” at home as he visited the United States to discuss the nation’s efforts to address religious persecution abroad. In addressing unsurprising pushback from “reluctant” Western governments about this vision, he stated the following: 

“They claim that working together with faith communities is against the principles of … impartiality in humanitarian assistance. We think that this is a complete misunderstanding of the humanitarian principles. And on the contrary, we think that working together with these faith-based organizations [is] the only way to reach the most vulnerable … and those communities who are left behind.”

This top Hungarian government official’s perspective on humanity paints a picture of how crucial morality and liberty remain for all cultures to thrive. He was made a believer when he observed that Hungarian schools where children were taught a biblical view of morality and social justice were the schools where children were thriving – both academically and behaviorally. 

Nearly a decade ago, Ukrainian leaders of various backgrounds and denominations had approached our ministry, explaining that they wanted to implement Bibles in public schools. Now with over two-thirds of the public schools having Bibles and bible-based materials, they also have seen a difference in schools’ and students’ performance when biblical tenets for life were taught. 

While the U.S. has removed the Bible from public schools, formerly atheist-run Eastern European nations’ governments, churches and schools are currently partnering together to provide Bibles to students, teaching lessons on Christian values and ethics in schools. Why? Because they have observed how this has ultimately improved student behavior, performance and long-term morale. With more than 4.5 million Bibles and bible-based materials having been distributed throughout Eastern Europe free of charge since 2021 – and more planned for 2024 and beyond – we’ve witnessed a miraculous unification among these nations formerly under communism, transcending religious and cultural divides throughout the region. 

We are seeing this across multiple nations – not just Hungary and Ukraine:

  • Last year in Croatia, nearly 80,000 Children and Teen Bibles were delivered to public schools for use in the classrooms
  • Republic of North Macedonia’s leading religious officials recently extended commendation for efforts in providing every child in North Macedonia with a Bible; Macedonian church leaders have also expressed gratitude in recalling their nation’s biblical history, sharing, “Here the Gospel seed was sown first by the apostle Paul, but this country, like all the countries of the world, has a need for the message of Christ to be continuously shared with each new generation.”

Ultimately, nations rooted in God become thriving, unified nations, producing compassionate and moral members of society.  We have seen this happen over time at EEM (Eastern European Mission) as we have provided Bibles in the region for the last six decades, and more specifically in providing hundreds of thousands of children’s Bibles in recent years. We expect this trend to keep growing as we are slated to distribute 570,000 Bibles for public-school students and refugee children in this region through our Bibles For Kids campaign in 2024.

Going Back to a Foundation on God’s Word

Let us allow Eastern Europe to serve as an example to us all. Real hope for the nations is founded on goodness, truth, justice and liberty—all concepts originating in the Bible. May we return to this foundation of faith for the sake of our children, our nation and our world. I believe we could see a renewal in society if we welcomed the Bible back into our lives, our homes, and our schools. Imagine our students understanding respect for one another and the rewards of good behavior and hard work.

We must commit to opening our Bibles more than our phones; to raising our children in homes where righteousness and honor are valued over that of image and ease. We must actively fight for unity and justice for others, choosing love over division, simultaneously urging our national leaders to reinstate policies within schools that are founded on God’s Word. 


This article first appeared in World Net Daily on March 15, 2024.

Guest post: Bob Burckle and Dirk Smith are president and vice president, respectively, of EEM (Eastern European Mission), which has been delivering God’s Word to the people of Eastern Europe since 1961, now reaching 32 countries in 25 languages. It provided nearly 2 million children’s and teen Bibles and Bible-based materials free of charge in the region in the last two years, including in public schools in several nations. Learn more at http://www.eem.org/bfk.

Patriot Mobile supports the ministry of EEM.

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