Wednesday, December 4, 2013

The Gypsy Village

    Back in Maryland when this trip was planned it was placed on our leader's (Dawn) heart to adopt a gypsy village. This village would be one of our primary focuses. It was for this village that we set aside some of our shoeboxes and brought coats for the children. I must admit that visiting this village comes with mixed emotions. The gypsies here are shunned by others. They are probably the poorest of the poor and where our hearts should be most broken. We were also warned though to keep our valuables close at hand. A simple hug could result in something lost. After all, they are gypsies and will use what they can to survive. Sadly as a Christian that fear convicted me and hurt my heart.
     We arrived there and were heartily greeted.  There were only a minimal amount of children. We did our candy cane story, gave out some candy, danced in the street and played some games. It was muddy and dirty but our hearts were filled. We decided we would come back later when their were more children and promised to do so. We visited another church for about two hours before heading back to the village. When we returned the children ran and gathered around us. The chief of the village came and helped organize the distribution of our boxes, coats and shoes. I need to add that Tony ( a member of our team) brought along boxes of sunglasses and crocs to be handed out. They proved to be a blessing. Distribution was organized chaos as some wanted more than what we could offer but the chief kept things in control. On a negative note we think we saw some of the things that we provided being resold on the street as soon as we gave them out. That is the way of life here and I can only imagine that there was a greater need for the money rather than the coat or shoes. God is in control and we can't let disappointment get in the way of His plans.
      Speaking of plans, Danny (the pastor), also has this village on his heart. He lives nearby and is active in this community to bring the gypsies to Christ. Sadly many years ago the Word was brought here but no one followed through. Danny has vowed to change that and is working hard here. Other local churches will not welcome the gypsies into their places of worship. It is part of Danny's plan to build a church here in the village. It will cost 20-25 thousand USD but it can be done. Danny's wife would also like to see an after-school care for the children as part of this plan. I know this can be done with help and prayer and we are excited to be a part of this and watch it unfold.

1 comment:

Hannah H. said...

It's so encouraging to hear about your time in Romania….especially the pastor's vision for following up with the sharing of the gospel!