Today I felt disappointed again that I could not go to Sabolciu so it was a strange week for me that I could not go any of the week days. I am thankful that I can still go on Sunday afternoon when Dan does church with the adults. It is such a blessing from God to still have another opportunity to spend time with the children even on the weekend. I am looking forward to seeing the kids in a couple of days!
Around 3:30pm Dani picked me up from my apartment, then we picked up Tabita and
Salomea and then we went to the orphanage to get the younger children for their club. Today we had around 17 kids for the younger orphan club which was from 4:00 – 6:30pm (including the travel times). We had a really great time with the children!
Salomea and I stayed with the first group of kids that came with the first van load. We played games and sang songs while we waited for the rest of the kids to come. When Tabita came back we took the kids to a park near the place where the club is held because she couldn’t find the key so we had to wait until the owner brought another one.
The children had a great time playing at the park! There were swings, a sea saw and a ride with seats that spun around. It was also a beautiful day to go to the park as well. After a while we were able to get the key so we went back to where the club was held to do our
program with the kids there. Today we did a craft and ate bananas for a snack. That was all we had time to do because time was so short once we got back however the children had a really great time and everyone seemed to enjoy themselves. I have to admit the young children are so sweet!
After the young children’s club was finished I spent around 30 minutes at the orphanage to hang out with the kids there and encourage them to go to the older kids club. It was great to spend a bit of time talking to the girl that I used to mentor. For a while she seemed to distance herself from me but since last week she has been expressing interest to spend time with me again. I have really been missing that one-on-one time that I used to have with her so I am very thankful that we have at least a bit of time to spend together at the orphanage. I am also so glad that she has started going to chapel again!
The older kid’s chapel for the orphan teens and young adults went really well today. The first half of the chapel we spent time singing praise and worship songs. They really seem to enjoy that time and today we even learned a new song. I think it’s awesome to see them worship God with so much joy in their hearts!
After the worship time, Dan (he is one of the orphan mentoring co-ordinators) introduced the new game that we will be doing with the kids to review what we are studying from the Bible at the chapel time. Dan created a game exactly like “Who wants to be a Millionaire?” (The only difference is the Bible is one of the life lines instead of calling a friend). It is so very cool and the kids got so excited over it when they found out what we would be doing!
Dani (one of our staff) decided to be the first “contestant” to show the kids how the game works however the questions were about the book of Acts as an example to not do the same book that we are studying at chapel. Then one of the older orphan girls was the next “contestant” to answer questions about the first chapter from the gospel of Mark. She seemed nervous but she did extremely well. The rest of the kids also seemed excited to participate in the game as well which was awesome to see!
Personally I think the chapel time will be a lot more effective now with going through the gospel of Mark verse by verse and then reviewing it by doing a fun game. Today we had around 15 kids come out to chapel but I believe the attendance will grow as they tell their friends about what we are doing at chapel now and then more will come out as they too are curious about it.
We would appreciate your prayers for the young children’s club and also the chapel for the teenagers and young adults that the time will be fruitful and of spiritual growth in their lives. Thank-you so much for your prayers for these precious orphan kids that need Christ so much in their lives!
Update on Pastor Youcef in Iran:
There is a major development today in the fight to put pressure on Iran for Christian Pastor Youcef Nadarkhani’s release. Congressman Joe Pitts and Heath Shuler are leading a bipartisan effort to save Pastor Youcef. They are sending a letter to Secretary of State Clinton calling on her to “use all the powers at your disposal” for “swift engagement with the international community to advocate for his release.”
This letter is still gaining signatures from Members of Congress. Currently, thirty-nine Members of Congress, including thirteen Democrats, have signed on to this letter, and that number continues to grow by the hour. Of critical importance, one of the early signatories for this letter is Congressman Keith Ellison – the first Muslim elected to Congress.
An early draft of the letter provided to the American Center for Law and Justice states: “We implore you to raise your voice at this critical juncture on behalf of Pastor Nadarkhani. We must not stand by while the Iranian Regime executes a man who has committed no crime.
There are now 105,030 people that have signed the online petition on the American Center for Law and Justice website so it is past the 100,000 mark however let’s continue to encourage people to sign it and get it higher than that. I have been praying for Pastor Youcef and his situation all week. I just want to encourage you to do the same because he needs our prayers.
Here is the full report on the American Center for Law and Justice website:
Major Bipartisan Support in Congress for Pastor Youcef:
Two other news articles on their website that are related to Pastor Youcef:
Senator Blunt Joins Call to Save Pastor Condemn Iran’s Failure to Protect Religious Freedom:
Calling on United Nations to Save Christian Pastor’s Life:
How can I say there is no God when all around creation calls…?