I have so much to write. Bear with me, please!
The college team from Rolling Hills, California (more specifically, from my home church Rolling Hills covenant) arrived at 1am on Sunday morning.
Dana G and I got them to Calvary Chapel Bucuresti quickly and safely! I was just showing them their rooms when they held me hostage and made me drive to McDonalds at 2:30am. They said they needed a “late night snack” despite the fridge I had stocked with food and chocolate, so this happened.
We all went to sleep around 3/330ish. I arrived back at the church at 10am and wait for a few of the team volunteers to come back to my house and organize and pack up the big church van with all of the camp kits for week 1. My house looked like this for over 2 weeks so having onlythe backpacks for camp 2 in my hallway and living room felt AMAZING!
Once that was done We went back to the church and ate a typical Romanian holiday meal- sarmale. Basically like cabbage rolls filled with meat and rice. They are amazing and take a long time to prepare so I am so thankful for Dana for cooking for us! As soon as we had lunch it started RAININGGGGGG. Like seriously, pouring. And our plan was to take all 32 camp kits to the children so the team could see where they live and meet them.
We did it anyways, and you can tell by the slow progression of me looking like id just gotten out of the shower, that the rain did not stop at all. Not for one second. Anyways, here is what most of you are here for- THANK YOU to all of my friends in Bucharest who made these bags filled with brand news clothes for these children who have nothing. They were so happy!
It was around 6pm when we finished up visiting all of these kids and we headed back to the church where the team ran through all of their skits and testimony’s and we ordered pizza. I had to make a couple more last minute stops at stores for vomit bags (remember, these kids have never traveled this far so we expected lots of sickness in the bus weaving through the mountains), medicine, etc and then picked up real American smore ingredients from my friend. Eventually, I got home and packed. I think it was 8:30pm when I passed out. I had a 5:30 alarm set so I didn’t even feel guilty.
Monday morning was slightly chaotic as the children come from ALL over Bucuresti so Mike and I had to drive 40 minutes to “india” to pick those children up and bring them to our bus. All of the rest of the kids met at a park around 8am. I dropped off the kids and headed to the church to load up my car with the team’s luggage, and craft supplies and pick up Jonathan who drove with me to camp.
Less than two and a half hours later we had arrived and around noon the bus pulled in!
Assigned them each their rooms and their leaders.
And then had lunch! MOST of these children are lucky to have a meal a day. And a meal consists of bread or beans or rice so they were a little shocked when we had a three course meal. Ciorba (Romanian vegetable soup, a little sour) chicken and mashed potatoes and a crepe filled with chocolate. One girl at my table even asked if we were going to eat later, she couldn’t believe we were eating at 1pm and again at 6pm.
After lunch we had the children go to their rooms and relax for a bit. They are currently decorating t-shirts in the huge room upstairs as it hasn’t stopped raining since lunch. We will play indoor games and sing and dance until dinner at 6. Night program which is the college team has prepare, more singing. And then small groups where we can really get to know these children better. LIGHTS OUT AT 9. We are going to visit Peles Castle tomorrow so please pray for good weather- and google it- its gorgeous!
Sorry for the overly detailed blog post about my last 36 hours but I will not be writing on here for the remainder of camp. I think it would be a lot better for you to hear from the team, and their perspective. With that said, I know many of you WANT details and details and more details, so I will try and tell them to write as much as possible. So until I do post, sometime after the team leaves, continue praying for a safe week away. This week could be the only week of these children’s lives that they get to shower daily, eat daily, and sleep soundly.
And of course, thank you to everyone who is and was a part of this week. I know it takes more than a village to not only organize and run, but to pay for and pray for. Thank you thank you thank you!
Totally forgot than an all start college team member wrote a blog post last night but I had fallen asleep before I could post it. So here is Jessie’s unedited and unread (I don’t read them until they leave) post from yesterday:
Hi my name is Jessie! Our day pretty much started right after lunch. We had one objective for the day and that was to give all the children who signed up for the camp there sponsored backpack/bag plus free clothes. We got in our van and had a nice drive through the city to get to our destination. Our first stop was this little place called India, and it’s where a bunch of the homeless families stay. Once we got out of our van, one by one the children started coming out. Once we started handing out the backpacks/bags the kids receiving them, they’re faces started lighting up with joy, they were so happy that they ran off to there homes to try on there new clothes.But when we were done handing out the gifts, we went inside their homes to talk to some of the family members. The stories were heartbreaking, some of the children were abandoned when they were very young, some never knew there mother. The living conditions were unbelievable. The size of the homes are comparable to some of the rooms of an American home. Many shared the same bed; they had 3 or 4 people share one bed and some had to sleep on the floor. But even with all these conditions they were some of the most happy children I’ve ever met in my life, it made me happy knowing that I was going to spend whole week with these kids and getting to know them and to spread the word of Jesus. We had to give gifts to kids at three other locations. We heard the same stories and saw the same conditions with the other children that lived there. Once we were done we came back and started going over everything we were going to do for the week. It got me excited about every little thing we are doing. Playing games with them, To preforming funny skits, to see them smile and happy will be worth all the work we have put in for the past 5 months and more. I’m on fire to see the way God moves with these children. just today made me appreciate all that I have and all that God has done. I can’t wait to be a part of helping give these kids one of the best weeks of there life!
Okay, I am seriously leaving now. I hear the kids playing games and screaming and laughing and I am very jealous not to be up there with them. Ill leave you with my current view….