On Sunday June 12, 2011
I have four more days until I leave for Romania and five more until I see my Minnie!!
Today was a very busy day! This morning I woke up exhausted because I went to bed almost 2:00am last night and I had to wake up no later than 8:30am this morning to leave for church. I went to church with my Mom with all the stuff we needed for the fundraiser event at 9:15am and my Dad took his truck to church with all of the spaghetti sauce.
The service started at 10:00am so we had around 30 minutes to do more set up before the service began. My parents stayed downstairs in the kitchen to prepare for the fundraiser event. I decided to go to the service because it was my last service at my home church before I return to Romania. My Pastor was going to pray for me during the service since it was my last time being at church before I leave for Romania but for some reason he forgot which was disappointing.
When the worship band started playing the last song to end the service and I realized that there would be no prayer for me I rushed downstairs to the gym to help. The service ended around 11:45am and the event started at 12:00pm. Thankfully there was plenty of help offered by many people (even kids!) which was such a blessing. My Mom asked me how the service was. I told her it was good but Pastor Sam forgot to pray for me and then my eyes filled with tears. My Mom told me not to worry about it and just to focus on the event.
When I saw Sue who is my Pastor’s wife come downstairs I told her that I waited for the whole service for Pastor Sam to pray for me but then when he didn’t I rushed downstairs at the end. Sue told me he must have just forgotten but most likely not on purpose. Then shortly after I spoke to Sue, Pastor Sam came up to me and apologized for forgetting to pray for me during the service. He told me it was not on purpose and he wasn’t even sure why he forgot. He seemed very sincere because he must have apologized to me at least three times.
My Pastor still wanted to pray for me and he asked if it would be possible to do it at the event. I told him that I would appreciate that and probably the best time to do that would be after I share about Romania and the ministry I do there. He told me that he would like to do that and I was very glad that He still wanted to pray for me. He also told me that at the event it would be a good place to pray for me because there are a lot of people who know me and support what I do in Romania. I agreed with him and then I continued to interact with other people who attended the event.
I was amazed at the turn out of how many people attended the fundraiser event! We
expected around 100 people to come out but there ended up being around 85 people which is still a good number especially it being the very first event like this for me. I am so grateful beyond what I could possibility put into words everyone who came and took time out of their Sunday afternoon to come! It was such an encouragement to me to see so many of my supporters, friends, two Pastors with their families and even people come out that I didn’t even know to show their support for me!
There was even a family there that I used to baby-sit for and I haven’t seen their children in five years. It was so great to see them again and also to see the kids a bit more grown up! Man does that make me feel old! Time definitely flies by! For some reason we just weren’t able to connect in person all these years when I visited home in Canada during my short breaks of living overseas so it was such an incredible surprise to see them there today and so many of my other friends and supporters too!
These are some of the wonderful people who helped out at the event: Nicolas who is
Camille’s husband was the MC for the event, Camille took charge of the auction tables and their son Craig took care of the ticket table at the door. My parents, my brother and a couple that supports me served the food at the buffet table. Oh and two other people that helped were Santosh (he cooked the noodles during the service) and Debbie (she announced the winners for the silent auction). There are also quite a lot of people who helped with the set up and tear down but unfortunately I don’t know everyone’s names. I am so grateful for everyone who helped because that freed me up to socialize with the people who attended the event.
Once everyone got settled into their seats at their tables we officially started the event. Nicolas welcomed everyone to the fundraiser event; he thanked everyone for coming and supporting me. Then he asked someone to pray for the food and then we started inviting
people to the buffet table for the meal. I decided not to eat but just to eat when I got home because otherwise I wouldn’t have had time to interact with the people who attended the event. While people ate their meal I went around taking pictures, doing video greetings (this is just for me personally when I am in Romania I can play it back on my computer and be encouraged from friends and supporters) and I also had a guest book that flowed around too.
After everyone finished eating their meal we moved onto to the door prizes. Last night I thought of ten questions plus a bonus question to ask everyone for the door prizes (the person who answered the correct answer got a picture mug of the children that I work with in Romania). The first five questions were just general questions (e.g. Who is the youngest person in this room?). The other five questions were asked after my speech because they were related to what I shared (e.g. How many years have I been living in Romania?). The bonus question was “What is the name of my cat in Romania?”
After we asked the first five questions for the door prizes it was my time to share of what I do in Romania and the ministry there. This past week I wrote my speech and I went over and over it but when I actually started to speak I became nervous as I stood in front of everyone. I spoke around 7 minutes but it probably felt much longer than that to me because of my nerves. Later I asked a couple of people if I looked nervous and they told me that I didn’t so I am very thankful for that.
What I shared it really was in a nutshell of thanking people for coming out, a brief summary of what I do in Romania and the ministry that Pathway to Joy Ministries does,
some of my highlights of this past year and what I’ll be doing in Romania when I return. I ended my speech with asking everyone for their continual prayers both for the children and for myself as I return to Romania and continue to do what I do there. I am grateful for God giving me the confidence and peace to speak and also for everyone’s attentive listening ears as I shared my heart.
After I shared I invited my Pastor up for a time of prayer. I am so grateful that Pastor Sam expressed interest in praying for me. He came up to the front, introduced himself to everyone because not everyone there were from my home church, he apologized again for forgetting to pray for me during the service and he also mentioned that everyone at the event are the people who will remember to pray for me when I’m in Romania.
Then my Pastor invited people up to the front to lay their hands on me as he prayed for me. It was such an encouraging time for me to be soaked in prayer at the event because I originally wanted a time of prayer but I had no idea to go about doing that so I guess God had it in His plans all along! As my Pastor prayed for me and I also heard the prayers of everyone else I just felt God’s presence which was so beautiful! When the prayer time was over I received lots of hugs from the people who came up to pray for me which was such a blessing!
After the prayer time Nicolas finished asking the door prize questions and then we announced the winners for the silent auction. Then the event was pretty much finished. I am so grateful to God beyond what I could possibility put into words of everything that He did today at this fundraiser event! It turned out to be a huge success, I felt so encouraged by so many people and I am just blown away of how much money that was raised from the event!!
Everything was sold from the silent auction (the total was $500), there were lots of
donations from the bake sale that my Mom did (the total was $64), the total ticket money that was received not including the food was $730 so in total $1,294!! Again I’m just blown away by what God did today!! I just give God praise! What a confirmation that I am right where I am suppose to be which is serving God in Romania and reaching out to these precious orphan and gypsy children.
When I got home after the fundraiser event I finally got a chance to eat because I didn’t eat at church. I also thanked my parents for everything they did because without their dedication and sacrifice it wouldn’t have been a success. I am so thankful to have such supportive parents! What a blessing from God! My parents and I felt exhausted from the busyness of preparing for the event but at the same time our hearts were filled with joy of how it went and so thankful to God for what He did. Again what an incredible blessing from God to have this experience before I head back to Romania!