Dobroye den! (Good afternoon in Russian)
Last night found several of our team on the "night run" with Uri to the homeless children living on the streets and underground. They too were able to see the living conditions and hopelessness of these children.
The team had another memorable team time. We focused on the scripture of Hebrews 10:23-25. We were reminded that we are to spur each other on in our faith, not only the team but those that we are ministering to here.
Sally, Linda and Bennie visited the Women's Addiction Center where recovering drug addicts live and are rehabilitated. We heard powerful testimonies of God's deliverance from their addictions and how they are growing in their faith. The only thing that gets them through the day is their dependency on Christ and His redeeming power. During our prayer time, one of the women prayed "Thank you God for loving the drug addicts. Thank you for changing us!" Their recovery has truly been miraculous, as their detox time is very short. It is truly the Lord's grace and mercy.
Erik, Peter, Sandy, translators and staff joined the volunteers at Hedrow Park for the program for the street kids. Today's lesson was The Prodigal Son. The skit was complete with costumes and egg carton noses for the pigs! The numbers have greatly increased since we have started. Today there were about 30 children. FYI, Tonya was there again. (Continue to pray for her, the lost sheep). The ice breaker today was the Hokie Pokie. The kids loved it and laughed and laughed! The lunch was prepared by Pat and Handyman Bob, since Veronica (the staff worker cook) was very sick. Please keep her in your prayers. With staff, team, street kids and women's ministry over 100 people were fed, just today. We thank God for their creativeness in the culinary arts in an 8x10 kitchen with no Cuisinart and an oven restricted to "on" or "off". The brownies were done in 15 minutes. And we didn't even have a microwave. (She needs one!)
Doris and Oxana went to the state orphanage, ages 0-4. Quite different from our Fathers House. They taught the children how to sing "O'McSasha had a farm", with a "gruff gruff here and a gruff gruff there" (no bow-wow in Kiev). There are wonderful opportunities for American families to adopt from this orphanage.
We spent the afternoon back at the state shelter. But this time, we met with the children most recently placed here by the militia. Some had only been here for 4 hours. There heads had been shaved and were in a "holding environment". We did as many physicals as we could, and Dr. Doris did as many psychological assessments as possible. The stories broke our hearts! One gypsy child had many scars all over his body from abuse. His father had thrown him into a fire, and he was badly scarred from burns. He also is a self mutilator with scars of cuts all over his arms. He could not read or differentiate shapes. He will require psychological attention. Sally and Bennie couldn't hold back the tears. During his exam, Dr. Peter was praying for him. This child is an example of the "throw away child". So many of these kids have been living on the streets for years (7-8) before the militia picks them up and puts them in the shelter, some as early as age 5. Many of the children want off the streets and feel safe once they have been placed at the shelter and they are being fed.
Dr Rob and Tammy continue to provide dentistry to the city of Kiev! They have an endless reserve of stamina and energy as they lovingly minister to the occlusally challenged kids and adults alike. They use humor a lot. Can you imagine your dentist working on you while he is wearing a clown nose?
Tonight was the worship time here at Patricia's with her women's ministry. Most of these women are in abusive relationships. There were probably about 30 women and the team which included the 4 minority males. The women were encouraged by the testimonies of the men, as a hush fell over the audience. We appreciated their joyful worship and beautiful melodies in their native tongue.
Tomorrow, we are tourists, sightseeing, shopping, and touring the St Sophia and Mother Russia! We'll be buying lots of Ukrainian souvenirs. We hope some of you will like the Matroshka dolls and Ukrainian Eggs under your tree this year!
The Kiev Team
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last updated Apr 7, 2000