School Supplies 2015

Thanks to our wonderful intern, Kelvey, who decided to use some of her blessing money to buy back packs and note books for the kids in Stroiesti!  And what better place to hand out the school supplies, than the new school play ground!

Thank you Kelvey for the school supplies, you made a lot of kids happy about going back to school!

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Teen Camp 2015

Our second camp of the summer was a good success.  Bless those teens!  We started camp on Tuesday in the pouring rain and didn’t see the sun until Saturday afternoon. It didn’t rain the whole time but it was cold.  But Praise the Lord we had teens and not kids that week. The teens showed great patience and understanding and self-control even though they were stuck inside so much.

Our morning devotionals, led by our intern Kelvey, were springboards to great conversations that wouldn’t have happened otherwise.  I was able to teach 2 of my 4 lessons on teen dating violence-Thank you to Domestic Violence Shelter and Services of Wilmington for sharing the curriculum. The other 2 lessons will be taught this fall.  I loved how the teens got involved in the discussion and in the activities.  One of MBK’s purity presenters came and shared with the teens–great lesson and we hope to get her back again! Our friend, Marcel, from Diakonia church was able to come one evening and share the Gospel message. I wasn’t able to stay because of my two small ones, but the room was a buzz when I came back and all the teens were telling about the MESSAGE!!  Awesome.

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A woman from Gabriela’s Salon in Suceava came to teach the girls how to simple, natural looking make up and skin care. We’ve noticed many of the girls, unsuccessfully, trying to copy the crazy make up trends from magazines, and decided it would be better to have some teach them how to do make up right, so they don’t look like Rahab before the fall the Jericho.

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We did some fun craft projects including tye-dye t-shirts–thank you to Beadoer.org for donating the t-shirts. Thank you to New Harvest Church for the craft projects.

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The teens took a day long hike–like 15 miles to the top of a mountain. Everyone made, no one came back early and everyone said it was worth it!

Over all, it was a good camp, even if breakfast was stolen one morning….still don’t know who……

(Stay tuned for more pictures of teen camp 2015!)

Daniel

This is a very long story.  But I think it is worth reading. It shows how God can use “knuckheads” like us to bless people. If you can’t read it all now, save the link and come back to it.

For camp 2014, I happened to have a free space for a camper. A friend suggested a boy from a gypsy family that she had worked with, named Daniel.  So Daniel came to camp last year. He had a good time, wrote his thank you note to his sponsor, and went home with great memories. Maybe, he could come back next year to camp.  I sent a Christmas box to him via my friend and that was pretty much it. Then this spring, knowing that our camp would be smaller, I took Daniel off the list for camp, because we weren’t working with his family–they live in a different village that we don’t work with. It’s not that I don’t care about Daniel, it’s just that I have so many kids who want to come to camp that I have to prioritize the list, etc. BUT then his 2014 sponsor wrote to me and sent money just for Daniel to go. So Daniel was put on the list.  His family was called and he was thrilled. This was in February 2015.

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A couple months pass and I find out that Daniel’s sponsor, MBK board member, Shari, would be coming to Romania and wanted to stop by and see us for a few days and visit Daniel.  So I call Daniel’s family, no answer. And I call maybe 15 times. “Shari, I can’t find your boy.” Shari was disappointed…I’d keep trying.  I ask my friend if she had a different number…nope.  I ask if she knows where he lives. “My husband delivered gifts to his house like 2  1/2 years ago.”  I called the husband: “Do you know where Daniel lives?”  “For the most part, yes, I think maybe so…but I can’t tell you…I’d have to take you and I think I will remember the house.” Wow, a lot of confidence in finding the house.  So one afternoon, I leave my kids with my visiting parents and a ton of camp preparations, and go searching for Daniel’s house. We find the house, but no one is there. We leave a note with the neighbor, doubtful Daniel’s family would get the note and as we leave I see someone who is related to a couple that goes to our church, we chat and I think “Wow, the only person I know connected to this village happens to be across the street from Daniel’s house today…God is amazing.”  Maybe I will hear from them.

Two days later, I hear from Daniel’s mother. Her phone had been broken/stolen, and she had a new number. They figured camp wasn’t possible because they didn’t have my number and couldn’t contact me. So thanks to Shari, God had me search for him so he could go to camp. So a couple of days after that, I take Shari to see Daniel and his family.  I brought some can food items, hygiene items, two beautiful hand made blankets from a sponsor, and a couple of t-shirts and a back pack for Daniel for camp.

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The home was clean but almost empty. There was almost no food in the house. I told Daniel to pack his bags for camp, but his mother said the clothes he was wearing were the only clothes he had and that she washed them every couple of days.  I translated to Shari.  “I’d like to buy him some clothes for camp.”  I smiled, “I knew you would.”  We told the family we would do this and that I would bring the clothes to camp for Daniel. So afterwards, we said our good byes and left. We went shopping for Daniel.

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The next day, we were in Dorohoi and had to do some shopping for some children in the orphanage. Shari took the time to go shopping for Daniel’s family.  She bought clothes for him and his mom, his older brother and his 3 year old special needs brother, who lives in an orphanage close to their village. She bought cleaning supplies, dishes, hygiene items, candy, and some toys for the boys. We brought these things to our home and knew we would take them after camp, which started in a couple of days. Camp went well and when we got home we brought the items to Daniel’s family along with more can food items.

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Daniel’s mother cried. That morning, she had cornmeal and onions for her 2 boys to eat. She debated as to how much to fix because she only had enough for that day and wanted them to eat that evening. Then God brought her this food.  What you need to know, is that I have never met someone with so much faith.  Every other word from her mouth is praising Jesus, asking His blessing on someone and giving thanks. Even with so little, she is confident God will provide. She was delighted with all the gifts Shari had sent and was excited to visit her little son that week at the orphanage so she could bring him his gifts. (She would later tell me how Daniel played blocks with his little brother at the orphanage and it brought such joy to them all.)  Then I told her, that Shari had left some money to groceries and if she would tell me what she wanted I would bring them to her in the next week or so. She gave me a list and we also decided to get some chickens.

I made some calls and found 3 chickens I could buy from other family who could use the money. Then my car almost broke down in the city when we went to buy groceries. We got the car to the shop, took a taxi home and waited. And waited. The brake system was going to need some work. Teen camp was going to start on Monday. I called Daniel’s mom, “sorry, but you’ll have to wait until after camp.” She understood, no problem, “God will provide”. We rented a car and went to camp.

Camp finished. We loaded up food that was left over from camp-oil, tea, beets, garlic, sugar, jam, etc and got the chickens and then went shopping. We got flour, salt, canned meat (no fridge), rice, cookies, pasta, and I don’t know what else. We went to Daniel’s family. He wasn’t home–he was in a nearby orchard picking apples with his friend. His mom was home and was so blessed!  We gave some food to the neighbors, so there wouldn’t be any jealousy or problems.  “I opened the last can of food you gave us this morning.”  GOD TIMING IS PERFECT.

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A couple days later, I got a call. Daniel is in the hospital. We later found out he was severely dehydrated and had a mental “shock.” He has spent the last week in the hospital in Iasi.  I’ve gotten many updates from his mother and he is doing well and should coming home soon. His mother’s faith is still so strong. This woman has gone through so much, her husband died almost 4 years ago when she was pregnant, the shock causing some development problems with the baby. She has a son in jail and has had problems with some of her other 4 children.  She’s almost lost her home, but the mayor intervened and saved it for her. When she has a problem, she doesn’t start calling and asking for help or money. No, she gets on her knees and prays. I know for so many of us, we think, how can I fix this, then we remember to pray.  Daniel’s mom, has reminded me, I need to do it the other way around.

I am thankful to Shari, who was used by God, to push me to find Daniel. It wasn’t that I didn’t care about him, but I had so much else going on and so  many kids wanting to go to camp, It was just easy to take him off the list. Thank you Shari for pushing me to do this. Thank you God for blessing this family and letting me be apart of it.

Today, I challenge you to bless someone. Whether it be buying a cup of coffee for someone, packing a Christmas shoebox for a child in Romania (that was a subtle push) , or going above and beyond and providing a need for a poor family….just go and be the hands and feet of Jesus and bless someone today.