England Team

On
Sunday August 24th our third summer team arrived! The team was from Swindon, England
and they came to Romania
from August 24th to 31st. There were seven people on this
team. The leader was only male. He brought his wife along with their daughter
and four other ladies from their church. It was nice to work with a smaller
team because the last two teams I worked with were large. This was also my
first team I worked with and co-lead from England. They all had lovely
British accents! They were a great bunch of people and such a blessing to work
alongside with!

Airport up and
Orientation

At
10:30am I left to go to the Cluj Napoca international airport to pick up the
team. We had a new driver this time and he never been to the airport before so
it was quite interesting how he kept asking for directions when we got to Cluj.
We got to the airport just fine and the team’s flight arrived on time as well
with their entire luggage. It was good to see Jim again (he came to Romania for a
couple of days in November) and meet the rest of the team.

We
arrived in Târgu Mures around 4:00pm. Niss met us at the youth hostel. We
helped get the team settle into the hostel where they stayed the rest of the
week. Then we all went to the school where Kevin our direction did an
orientation with them. On thing was nice for them was they weren’t as jet
lagged as the teams from the States because they only had a two hour time
difference but they still seemed tired because they had an early start to their
morning. When the team arrived it rained and it continued to rain during the
orientation. The team just had a summer of rain in England so that was the last thing
they wanted to see and of course I wanted to see sunny weather too. Praise God
the rest of the week the weather was great! After the orientation we sent the
team to go on their scavenger hunt around the centre of the city. Everyone did
well and even one pair had an adventure on a bus!

Week’s Ministry

From
Monday to Friday the team had a pretty stable set ministry schedule during
their time in Romania which was great and I’m so glad they came for a whole
week too (the teams with Global Outreach only came for seven days but actually
it was only five full ministry days)!

Every
morning the team came to school at 9:00am for breakfast and then afterwards we
had devotions. It was great to have a time of worship and to seek God before we
started our day together. This was also the first team we did worship with the
guitar which was great! Every morning we looked at a different scripture
passages and then prayed with our prayer partners. It was a real blessing for
me to have prayer partners and pray for each other each morning.

The
team did a VBS type program to the theme of Narnia both at Life and Light group
home in the mornings and at the English school in the afternoons. It was great
to see them present the gospel through the film Narnia! We sang lots of
children’s praise songs which were filled with lots of energy and actions, we
taught them memory verses, then we split them into two groups to do either
games or crafts and then we ended the program with everyone together for a
large group game, a Bible story where we presented the gospel throughout the
week from creation to what Jesus did for us and then we watched a clip of the
Narnia film.

I
was quite impressed with how organized this team was! They were certainly very
well prepared and organized for what they came to do here in Romania and
everyone knew exactly what they were suppose to be doing throughout the week. I
actually found it less stressful because I didn’t have to worry about who was
doing what!

Life and Light group
home

Every
morning from 11:00am – 1:00pm we went to Life and Light group home and did a
VBS type program there. To be honest I was a little nervous how it would work
out with this team going there because the last team we ended up not being able
to go two days out of the three days we scheduled to go there. We called the
home and spoke to the director about this team going there and she said that it
would be fine. We prayed that God would work out all the details for this team
to be able to do the ministry program that they planned on doing with the
children and everything went well and even better because they want to start a
sponsorship program with the children there! It’s awesome because I’m now
starting to see God establish a closer relationship with our foundation and see
more of a long-term ministry start to develop there with them!

The
children and the staff both enjoyed having the team there and it was great that
they were there the whole week and not just for two or three days. Personally I
think it is better for a team to be there a whole week because the children
easily get attached and just going there for a few days is way too short for
them. It was also such a blessing for me to return to Life and Light because I
haven’t seen the children since the end of June. It was great to spend that
time with them! At the end of the week the team invited the children if anyone
wanted to accept Christ into their hearts to go to a corner to pray the
sinner’s prayer. I’ll never forget when one of the boys ran out to the corner
before any of the other children because he wanted to be prayed for and accept
Christ! For me I have been working with these kids for a year now and it was real
a blessing to see a group of them receive Christ that day. God is so good and
He is working in their hearts!

English Club at
school

Every
afternoon from 4:00 – 6:00pm the team did the same program they did at Life and
Light group home at the English school. Before the team came we had no idea how
many children would show up for the program because we didn’t even have any
children register! We handed out fliers and advertised in the local churches
but we weren’t sure how many children would come because after all this is the
country of last minute. On Sunday when the team arrived I was thinking about
this and how the attendance would be at the school. By the end of the week we
had twenty one (21) children come! How little my faith can be at times because
God is so faithful and He knew exactly which children He wanted to be there!

I
think it was the first time we had a VBS type program at the English school for
children where we presented the gospel to them. Many of the children that came go
to church but there were also many children who came that don’t go to church
(it was about half). It was awesome to see the children come to the school and
hear the gospel and yet have a blast! I am so glad how well it went in the
afternoons and it such a blessing to be a part of it.

The weekend

On
Saturday (August 30) we took the team to Sighisoara for the day. On Friday it
rained so we decided to not go to the gypsy village on Saturday after Sighisoara
but to have day off and do some sightseeing. I think that was a great idea
because it was a very busy full packed week. They enjoyed their time in
Sighisoara and then in the evening we came back to Târgu Mures for debriefing
and dinner.  

On
Sunday (August 31) we went to New Convent church in the morning. The service
was great! Jim, the team leader did a greeting to the church after the worship
time to share what they did during their week in Romania and then the team worked
with the children during the sermon.

In
the afternoon we took the team to Dealului
Street which is the gypsy community where we have
been taking teams in the past. Unfortunately it didn’t go so well as when we
took the last team there. We walked up the street to let the children know we
were there and then went to the park to spend time with the children there. We
played with the children at the playground, sang with them and Jim told them a
story but the whole time we were there it was a struggle to do anything with
them. This time the children were much more aggressive then they were before.
They were rude, didn’t listen and took the T-shirts the team brought before we
even gave them out. Later we decided to then only give out the bracelets and
not the rest of the stuff we brought but even that was horrible! Jim originally
had the bag with the bracelets then I took it from him which was a very bad
idea because the children practically attacked me to get it. I even got cut on
my left hand. When we left I felt very frustrated and angry that it went so
bad.

When
we all got back to the school I was still very shook up and I spent some time
letting out my tears and cried. Three other girls also cried. I saw how it
emotionally shook up the team. Jim told us not to let this experience discourage
us from what God did during the week. I told Jim and the girls who were with me
that I was sorry of what happened there because I felt responsible. Then I told
them through my tears that God has placed these children on my heart but after today
I really don’t know how to reach out to them. Jim and another girl on the team
prayed for me which encouraged me. Then Jim said to the whole team to come
together and pray for the gypsy community we just visited. Even though our
visit there didn’t go well something happened that encouraged me a lot. After
Jim told the Bible story one of the kids there looked up at him and said he
wanted to meet Jesus! I didn’t know this until one of the translators told us
when we got back to the school. That really touched my heart and I see more and
more what a need it is to continue to reach out to these precious children. I
do not want to give up reaching out to these children but I need God’s wisdom
and I need to pray more for this ministry.

Saying Farewell

On
Sunday afternoon at 4:45pm we said our good-byes and then loaded up the van to
go to Cluj. The team actually flew out on Monday (September 1) but we decided
since they had an early morning flight (6:20am) that it would be better for
them to stay at a youth hostel the night before in Cluj and then take a taxi to
the airport. Originally it was going to be just me to take the team to Cluj but
when Niss tried to explain to the driver where the hostel was he had no idea.
Niss then decided to also go with the team. After she spontaneously decided to
go I then told her she could go and I could stay and then everyone in the team
told me they wanted both of us to come.

I’m
so glad Niss decided to go to Cluj too because otherwise I don’t know how I
would have found the hostel by myself! When we got to Cluj we had trouble
finding the hostel but eventually we did find it. The hostel they stayed at was
very nice. After we settled the team in we all said good-bye and then headed
back to Târgu Mures. I ended up getting home at 10:45pm. When I arrived at home
my roommate was already asleep and I was quite ready for bed myself because I
was exhausted!

What
a great week! This week was overflowing with all of God’s blessings as we got
to work with the children both at Life and Light group home and at the English
school. We were able to present the gospel to the children and even see some
children come to Christ! This team was also spiritually very mature as well as
I saw how passionate they are for God and also for others. I’m so glad God
brought the England team to Romania and I
look forward to continually working with them in the future as they are
planning on returning next summer!

About Andrea

I am from Whitby, Ontario. I have lived in Romania for 9 years as a missionary but I am currently in Canada on a sabbatical break at this time. I have also lived in South Korea for a year and I have also been to Russia, Uganda, Albania and the Czech Republic on short-term mission trips. In 2012, God also gave me an amazing opportunity to go to Mozambique for the Harvest Mission School with Iris Ministries as well. I love children, reaching out to people who are in need and vulnerable, I have a passion to fight against the injustice issue of human trafficking and to simply share the love of Jesus wherever I go. I also love cats too and I have a cat of my own named Minnie!
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