The Carrol Foundation

Reconciliation in the Baltic States

“My servants will haul the logs from Lebanon to the Sea, and I will float them as rafts by sea to the place you specify” (1 Kings 5:9)

The ministry of reconciliation in the Baltics will not end with a shipment to Latvia, but rather mark only the beginning of an amazing work that God is doing and will do!

Pastor David Wilkerson speaking in Estonia in 2004 received a powerful prophecy concerning the Baltic States (Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania). The Lord spoke through David Wilkerson, saying: “There comes a time that God determines that He is going to bring joy and happiness to those who mourn. God has directed it is this time – a time that God has declared – and that this is an acceptable time, my time to take vengeance upon all the damage done by history. The Communists and all the nations that came before; every man in every country that came to plunder, to ruin, to destroy. Every tear shed by every Christian all through those years. Every tear that fell to the ground – He bottled those tears. God declared years ago. This is what He had to say, “My time. In my acceptable time, I will comfort my church.”

How it all began

It all began during my second year at SUMMIT in 2021 when after over 10 years of living in China and Asia, I began to become spiritually aware in private prayer and listening for God’s voice, that He wants me to go back to Riga, Latvia and bear witness of what He has done in my life and what He will do in the Baltics. 

From Left: Jacob Kuchmiy, Pastor Carter Conlon, Dr Teresa Conlon, Ephraim Smits

What happened to the Times Square Church’s choir loft and stage?

In the midsummer of 2021, Tressy Carrol and I were filming a documentary about the late Pastor William S. Carrol, and we needed some interior footage of the Times Square Church (TSC) main sanctuary. I noticed that the entire stage was removed and I asked Tressy what became of the choir loft and stage items?

The beautiful choir at Times Square Church in New York City before it’s removal

While asking this, I had a vision in my mind that if the stage was being permanently removed, then the Salvation Temple in Riga is the place for it! The Salvation Temple was built in 1927 in the midst of a real and very powerful spiritual revival in Eastern Europe. After the USSR dismantled, Latvia regained her independence in 1989, leaving the Salvation Temple in then the poorest and most crime-ridden part of town. This reminded me of where TSC itself was founded in its time. Similarly, the Salvation Temple is also in a part of the city where there is still great need and much work to be done among the addicted, afflicted, and abandoned. In many ways it feels as a continuous ministry, and a very symbolic one, of the same Spirit of the anointed Pastors who preached alongside Pastor Wilkerson at TSC and of those who preached and ministered in Latvia decades ago. Latvia knows Pastor Wilkerson’s preaching very well and the Baltic people would be incredibly encouraged to see the symbolic power behind this move.

Tressy made some phone calls and discovered that the choir chairs were in storage. After enquiry to the whereabouts of the beautiful wood panels that made the loft, another member of TSC had personally salvaged them and stored them in Pennsylvania. This is when I felt the excitement stirring up inside, I asked the question, “Is it possible that we can ship the entire loft to Latvia and install it in the Salvation Temple in Riga because that was the one part that was not finished?” The answer came: “yes.”

The chairs arrive at Tressy’s place

A crew arrived in early Spring and packed Tressy’s garage with 120 chairs. It was a day of much thanksgiving  and gratitude. Every single chair was precious, from where ministers and worshippers brought the Church into blessed prayer and song to the Lord. They ministered unto God and unto the people, bringing the entire congregation into praise. I learned much later from former TSC’s Music Director, Greg Thomas, that the music on Sunday’s was seldom programmed, but rather given to the spontaneous and awesome moving and guiding of the Spirit. As the founder of the Salvation Temple, Pastor William Fetler once said, “the chairs in the church are the birthplaces of souls.”

The beautiful chairs from Times Square Church arrive at Tressy’s house

The mahogany wood panels and stage items found in Lebanon

When we were driving up the hills to look at the wood for the first time, I saw a sign “Lebanon”. The words “My servants will haul the logs from Lebanon to the Sea, and I will float them as rafts by sea to the place you specify” (1 Kings 5:9)  came immediately to mind – why? To build the Lord’s house! Seeing the wood still intact, though it had survived winters in the fields, was remarkable. I felt then that the Lord’s hand was definitely on us and that this work was not only work, but more importantly His work. 

Since then, many have helped with the heavy work of moving the wood into shelter along with the 120 choir chairs, to wait for shipment to Latvia.

The TSC Stage (panels and boards) being moved from Lebanon PA to dry storage

More about the Salvation Temple

My history with the Salvation Temple goes back to when my father, Pastor Janis A. Smits recovered the building from the new government in 1991 for the purposes of God. The Salvation Temple was my father’s childhood church, although at that time already, the Soviets had pushed the congregation into the basement, and eventually outed them completely. My parents had been exiled from Latvia with their 10 children because my father did not compromise his faith and obedience to God. Many times the KGB interrogated, threatened, and even offered him high paying salaries if he would only stop preaching, but because he would not falter or give in to them, they finally told him, “you will go to prison,” to which my father replied, “prisons needs pastors too.”

From Left: Pastor Janis A. Smits (2006), an article from a newspaper, Pastor Smits baptizing young people in Latvia (1970s)

Because of much pressure from friends in the West, my father and his family were exiled. That’s when I came in. Born in 1984 in Canada, I became my parent’s 16th and last child, and when the cold war was over, I traveled with them on their return to Latvia to serve in rebuilding and restoring the Salvation Temple and its congregations. The building itself was in terrible condition and everything needed to be renovated. For 10 years between 1996-2006 my father worked to rebuild it, and completed most of the major work, except for the stage and choir loft. This is something He had said, “needed vision.”

The Salvation Temple main sanctuary incomplete stage floor in 2022 prior to receiving of the stage from Times Square Church

The Salvation Temple today

After graduating SUMMIT in May 2022, I returned to Latvia on faith. I had no job waiting for me, but I know what I heard from God. So here I am, barely 2 months later, writing from an apartment in the heart of the Salvation Temple’s neighborhood, at His complete disposal and in His service. This is only the beginning of many wonderful things to see and witness as there are many more ministries now that are developing. The Russian-speaking congregation that meets in the mornings is led by a Ukrainian Pastor Zvirid who I knew as the church’s youth pastor when I was young. When I met him and the church again, it was like a reunion and I felt the love of all the old familiar faces and many new ones. The Latvian-speaking congregation has decreased in numbers and does not have yet a full-time pastor, yet what inspires me is to see is that the congregation is attended by those living in this community and their eagerness to participate in new ministries and outreach. As a Latvian myself, knowing my language and my people, I know that I am called to walk and work among the poor, the addicted, the distraught and hopeless peoples in this vicinity, and to share the light of Christ with them and also to help them and their families to stand up and walk again. This is not work that can be done alone, and so I have been praying for fellow laborers, and many have also made their acquaintance with me. Now is the time of waiting for God to put it all together.

The Salvation Temple in Riga, Latvia (2022)

How can you help?

We need financial support to ship the 40ft container with the chairs and choir loft from Pennsylvania to Riga, Latvia.

For those of you who feel it in your hearts to pray – consider joining us in Riga to evangelize in the neighborhood, to train chefs in the soup kitchen, to help set up food recovery, or to organize a construction team to help renovate. For those who cannot come and do, please consider supporting this work financially and in prayer.

To those who once ministered from these very own chairs, I want to say this: Thank you for your legacy. Thank you for your chair.

Please pray for us. May God bless you.

Where do the Funds go?

You can help ship one chair for 60$.

We are raising $7,000 to cover:

* Export Documentation …………………. 1 x $150.00 ea = $150.00


* 40ft Container door to port self load … 1 x $6,850.00 ea = $6,850.00

Miscellaneous Items:



TOTAL ESTIMATE: ………………. $7,000.00

Upcoming Mission Trips & Ways to Support Them

From August 5 -August 22, Dr Daniel Sheard (a professor from SUMMIT) and his wife Sue Sheard, including a SUMMIT senior Jacob Kuchmiy (a Ukrainian-American) and his siblings will be traveling to Latvia to preach, teach, and evangelize. Pray for us!

From Left: Dr Daniel Sheard, Ephraim Smits, Jacob Kuchmiy

What does TCF do?

  • Facilitating all collection and accounting of donations;
  • Organizing the packing of the container with the broker the shipping company;
  • Personal support and encouragement to Ephraim Smits, including:
    • Arranging speaking engagements
    • Raising awareness by calling churches and introducing the ministry;
  • Communications whether phone, email, or by introduction. Receiving all correspondence related to this ministry and responding to them.
  • TCF acts as the financial intermediary for Ephraim without taking any commission or fees. Any overflow of fund collected on behalf of the Salvation Temple go directly to Ephraim and to support other ministries at the Salvation Temple.

If you would like to support and help us in a different way, please email Tressy Carrol at: God Bless you. 

Map of Latvia in the Baltic States

More Information

William Fetler Museum
David Wilkerson’s Baltic Prophecy in 2004 (video) youtube link (here)
Ephraim Smits’ testimony at the TSC Worldwide Prayer Meeting (April 2022) youtube link (here)