Dobri Vecher! That means Good Evening in Russian! This is Connie reporting today.
We cannot believe we have only two days left in Ukraine! Where has the time gone? We have been greeted by happy, smiling faces everywhere we go and will miss the Ukrainian hospitality when we leave. I am sure this is why so many of us make repeat trips here.
Assuming the guys have talked about our male translators in earlier blogs, I would like to give a shout out to our two female translators, Lera and Dasha. We certainly could not do what we do without them. They are much, much more than translators though. They have become our good friends, and they help us with our every need. They help our hostess, Lydia, with kitchen chores too. They always have smiles on their faces, and they are truly fine examples of a biblical Martha.
Our hostess, Lydia, is a self-taught chef, but we think any fine restaurant would hire her in an instant. Our meals are always beautifully presented, complete with parsley garnish. Though Lydia doesn't speak much English, she is totally fluent in the universal language of love.
Today's schedule started with a trip back to the orphanage. Doug, Matt, Lera and I are working with some of the older children. We have between 20-23 students each day. The students are attentive and well behaved, and are always looking for that bit of extra attention and love. Our lesson was about Paul's conversion today, and then the children wore a blindfold during a game which helped them to relate to Paul's blindness. We sang some songs and then had to tear ourselves away from these children who really wished we would stay. I'm glad we get to go back two more times.
Carol just shared how moved to tears she was when a sad looking 10 year old boy's face brightened up when he was presented with a simple paper name tag. He went home with a backpack and a small notebook and you would have thought it had been the best Christmas Day ever. We were told by the teachers that several of these boys were unable to participate because of their disabilities; that the boys were slow and simple-minded, but that was not true. By the second day they were participating in all the activities.
Our visit to the local school had to be cancelled today, so we had a few spare minutes which we used to stop for a team photo op at an intersection that has a brick wall with Krasnoarmeysk, which means "Red Army", spelled out. Of course, that is the name of the city. I'd write it in Russian, but then you wouldn't be able to read it, and this computer also has no Russian letters on it! We also took a few minutes to do some souvenir shopping.
In the afternoon we held children's classes at the church, and spent some time painting faces on teddy bears with a few of the teens. Krasnoarmeysk's Ted. E. Bear ministry has begun!
Before I close, we'd like to thank everyone for their prayers while we are here. Your messages to us are very encouraging. It is a privilege for each of us to be here and to be able to serve in this way. Thank you to our church leadership for making this possible.
And I'd like to also note an absence of notes in the blog from the Fleming family which makes us question if it was only DAVID they were concerned about in past years, and if they don't really miss the rest of us! Also, the Brown family has not checked in and we are considering leaving Matt with Natasha if they don't leave us a message.
God bless you all and we'll see you next week!
Connie, you were quick to point out those who had not commented but did not acknowledge those family members who were keeping up with the blog!! : )
Keep up the good work and be safe.
Хорошо услышать, что все идет так хорошо для Вас во всем году. Спасибо за то, что усовершенствовать нас. Я люблю зарегистрироваться на Вас каждый день.
I'm sure Mom (Carol) has mastered the Russian language (I know she is probably working hard at learning it!), so maybe she can translate above. Who knows what I may have really said!
Love and miss you, Jay
Hi on another rainy, make your own sunshine day....not sure how many days it will take to hear all of your experiences!! I'm ready!! Just sounds awesome....Carol, I picked up the phone to call you on the way home this afternoon....miss you, girl....but know "you must be about your Father's business"...and am so grateful you've been able to teach and love those dear little (?) ones....bet they didn't care if you knew their language or not when you did the songs!Post a Comment
Keep the good work up...know leaving is bitter/sweet. Maybe some addresses and we could start a ministry of "just saying hi and encouraging" the folks there...more later...sending more love and prayers!!!
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Mt. Juliet Church of Christ
1940 N. Mt. Juliet Road
Mt. Juliet, TN 37122
Mt.Juliet, TN 37121-0248
Sunday Early Worship: 8AM
Sunday Bible Study: 9:15AM
Sunday Late Worship: 10:15AM
Night Worship: 6PM
Wednesday Bible Study: 7PM