It was the first morning we enter the Urban Center without the buzz of pre-camp activity. It was a little sad, but the greetings and warm hugs from our new Urban family helped comfort us… Wednesday will be much harder…
Monday was team day! We first met as the CR team with Serghei and Vladimir, they asked for our thoughts on how the camp went and on the ministry as a whole, we were definitely full of praises for all they are doing and how they are reaching people practically and with the gospel. We as a team agreed that we look forward to sharing what we’ve learned here with others at home.
Then we were able to enjoy a trip out of the city, joined by several of the leaders from the camp and go to Orheiul. First to the caves above the river, then up the path to the monastery. This is a really beautiful area with a rich history.
After a delicious supper at what I can only describe as the most unique restaurant I’ve ever seen, we arrived back at our hotel saying goodnight to our friends and knowing the time for us to go home is very near…
But this morning… we were back at Urban! Again, to see some of our newfound friends and somehow the subject of pancakes keeps coming up, soooooooo….
But after all the yummy goodness was gone it was to work with us! Dan and Bernie accompanied our best friend (the one who has taken such good care of us all this time) Valentin to get a load of supplies for the care packages that the center makes up. They are packaging food (dry goods, canned meat, oil, etc.) and hygiene packages for single moms and also for refugees. They are doing about 150 packages a week for the various families. The package is good for one family for one month. Families must register with the Center and are given a bible with their first package. Today the staff was registering 260+ new families… yes, just today…
The rest of us were accompanied by Vlad on the electric trolleybus for an adventure to get the leaders and youth leaders from camp a small token of our appreciation for welcoming us into what they are doing with the youth at Urban Center.
When we once again gathered, we had a small discussion with Valentin who shared with us what their work has been with the Ukraine church. They have been able to send supplies, initially food & water, some medical supplies and hygiene care packages into areas in the Ukraine where they are most needed. Now they have been getting requests for bedding supplies and a generator. The bedding is in the works, the generator is proving more difficult and expensive. They are preparing for winter that still involves conflict. Our prayers of course are that this conflict will be over… God knows.
Tonight, we were able to visit the hill where the first team had been in May, overlooking Transnistria and Ukraine. It was a sobering moment to be there as the sun went down, praying for all those who are affected by the war. Praying that somehow through it all that people on every side might come to know the peace and salvation of Jesus. I hope someday we won’t have to pray peace over anyone, that God’s peace will just be present in us all.
Brenda, LeeAnne & Venta