zaterdag 28 april 2012

Spring in Moldova

Spring finally has come to Moldova. The temperatures are great outside and there is plenty of sunshine every day! Because of the change in the weather, Spiridon and I took a radical decision: we will not need anymore the electric blanket! The blanket was a great help in cold times and has become "necessitous" in our daily life! But now we will be brave and try to start living without it again!;-)

Another week at the office has passed and for the next week new plans have been made. Spiridon will be busy in the coming days to call around 50 pastors to tell them that they can come to the OM base and pick up several seeds packets to hand out to poor families in their villages. Around a 1500 families will be blessed with vegetable seeds, a 100 families will be blessed with potatoes and another 20 families with some baby chickens. All of the offered help of course serve one major goal: to present the love of God and draw people closer to Him! Let us pray that these spring projects will bring hope in people's lives and will make the people in Moldova think about their personal relationship with God. But let us also pray that the seeds will bring forward many fruits and that the poor families can grow many vegetables so this year they will not need to suffer from hunger.

From Sunday till Wednesday I will be gone to the South to Moldova and well to the famous place: Paicu. A German team will be going to this village and there is a need for a translator. And since I have lived in Paicu for about 8 months I offered to help out for a couple of days. I think I will have great time seeing again a lot of the children, teenagers, church people and elderly I have lived and worked with. I am looking forward to spend some time in the village and I pray that I will be a blessing for anyone I meet.

"be an instrument for noble purposes, made holy, useful to the Master and prepared to do any good work." (2 Timo 2:21b)

maandag 23 april 2012

Again Easter Weekend!

This weekend in Moldova people celebrate again Easter. And although Easter is supposed to be a celebration about Jesus who rose from the death and the new life we have in Christ, this time the Easter celebration is all about remembering your family who have already died. Different rituels are required like visiting the grave, putting food, clothes and candles on the grave, pooring some wine, that is blessed by the priest, on the grave etc. If you follow all the rules, many people believe that because you honor your family member, this will help the person who died to have a better life in eternity.
It is a strange celebration for me/ us and on Saturday we quickly visited the grave of Spiridon's grandfather. Hunderds of people, nicely dressed were at the graveyard, celebrating, drinking and eating. Actually it was very sad to see how people believe that this rituels really help. After 10 minutes we left and I felt sorry for all those people who are in some way so confused and do not know how they can be sure now already of having eternal life with God.

On Friday afternoon Spiridon's aunt arrived from New York and so we got to spend some time with Spiridon's family during the weekend. On Sunday afternoon we had a meal together and the weather was so nice that we stayed outside. See below some pictures....(some are real Moldovan style of picture taking..;-)

Cheers from the family!

Spiridon and his smaller brother Andrei

Daniel, our very active but oh so cute Moldovan nephew

My favorite Moldovan food: pancakes with cheese and cream on top!

vrijdag 20 april 2012

Terug van B4L/ Back from B4L

 Erg vermoeid maar wel voldaan zijn we gisteren thuisgekomen uit het zuiden van Moldavie. De bus4life trok weer de nodige aandacht en in de afgelopen dagen kwamen honderden mensen en kinderen de bus bezoeken. We hebben veel bijbels kunnen verkopen en we bidden dat deze bijbels gelezen zullen worden en een impact zullen hebben op de levens van deze mensen.

vrijdag 13 april 2012

Pasen! / Easter

Dit weekeind vieren we Pasen in Moldavie. Morgen reizen Spiridon en ik met de Bus4Life naar het zuiden van Moldavie. We zullen verschillende dorpen bezoeken met de bus. Natuurlijk hopen we op veel bezoekers in de bus: kinderen, jongeren, ouderen.....etc. Volgende vrijdag zijn we weer terug dus....tot later!

Bus4Life and driver Tukka

This weekend we celebrate Easter in Moldova. Tomorrow Spiridon and I will travel with the Bus4Life to the south of Moldova. We will visit different villages with the bus. Of course we hope that we will have a lot of visitors in the bus: children, youth, elderly....etc. Next friday we will be back so...till later!

See below link, for latest Bus4Life stories:

donderdag 12 april 2012

In de krant...

Een kleine verassing gisteren....

woensdag 11 april 2012

Wie herinnert zich Valeras nog?

Ongeveer een jaar geleden schreef ik in een nieuwsbrief over Valeras. Hij was toen 6 jaar oud en woonde bij zijn oma. Zijn ouders willen niet voor hem zorgen en hebben hem achtergelaten bij oma. Valeras zijn situatie was erg hopeloos en eigenlijk is er niet veel veranderd aan zijn situatie. Oma is geregeld dronken en Valeras moet het hout hakken, de kachel aanmaken, eten koken, kleren wassen, het huis schoonmaken, water halen bij de put, in de tuin werken enz. Alles wat normaal een volwassene als taak heeft, moet Valeras voor zijn oma doen. Kortom, Valeras leeft nog steeds in zeer belabberde omstandigheden. 
Ieder weekeind wanneer we naar Micleuseni gaan, zie ik Valeras hard werken en zo nu en dan komt hij op zondagmorgen naar de zondag school. Je kunt zien dat hij geniet van de tijd die hij met andere kinderen doorbrengt en mee kan doen aan spelletjes, knutselwerkjes etc.

Sinds September 2011 gaat Valeras naar school maar zijn resultaten zijn niet echt goed. Niemand kijkt naar hem om en helpt hem bij het maken van zijn huiswerk. Op school wordt hij gepest en de juf wil niets met hem te maken hebben want hij heeft geen nette kleren en ook zijn er geen officiĆ«le papieren ingediend zodat Valeras ingeschreven staat op school.

Valeras komt naar de naschoolse opvang bij de kerk en in de laatste paar weken is er een verandering te zien in Valeras. In gesprekken met oma en andere kinderen die naar de naschoolse opvang komen, wijst Valeras erop dat er bijv. eerst gebeden moet worden voor het eten of dat oma moet bidden tot God en vergeving moet vragen want anders zal ze nooit van de drank afkomen. God is bezig in het leven van Valeras! Laten we voor hem blijven bidden want hij heeft het niet makkelijk en iedere dag is weer een nieuwe uitdaging om te overleven.

We proberen nog steeds om toestemming van oma te krijgen zodat Valeras ook naar het kindertehuis mag verhuizen (zijn half broertje woont daar ook) maar oma wil haar “knechtje” niet opgeven. Bid voor wijsheid en inzicht in hoe we Valeras zouden kunnen helpen.

vrijdag 6 april 2012

Nieuwe nieuwsbrief/ New newsletter

Onze nieuwe nieuwsbrief is uit! Lees mee over wat er gebeurd in MoldaviĆ«:

Our new newsletter is finished! Read about what is happening in Moldova:

maandag 2 april 2012

It takes a bit of courage to visit an elderly

My visit to the old lady called Vera already starts a bit more difficult than other visits. While I am walking up to her house, the two watch dogs bark their heads off and do not look friendly at all. I do not feel very comfortable, so I try to get to the house as quickly as possible. I have heard that this lady has been abandoned by everybody and has just come back from hospital. Some neighbour found her frozen in her house and called the social worker of the village to do something about Vera’s situation. As a result Vera was taken to hospital and stayed there for about a week to regain strength and to defreeze. I really want to deliver the food parcels to this lady in need, but when the dogs start to bite at my ankles and later really bite, I am about to give up. After a short knock I just open the door and enter - no polite waiting for the door to be opened - so Vera looks a bit surprised when she suddenly sees the food parcel and me in the middle of her one-room house. The house is dark, dirty, smelly and cold. Vera is sitting on the bed and is happy to receive the food parcel but the next problem I observe is that Vera does not have any wood to make a fire and so she won’t be able to cook the food she has just received. She doesn’t have any family or anybody who helps her. During the last winter she didn’t make any fire at all and lived in total cold. After she has signed the paper, confirming that she has received the parcel, I say goodbye and even though I know that the moment has come once more for me to face the angry dogs and be bitten again, I am glad that I have visited this lady and was able to see how desperately the elderly in Moldova need help. May God bless this lady and help us to reach out and find the elderly who are forgotten.