Russian Flag

Day 5

Day 5After recovering from a full New Year’s celebration, the team resumed our regular schedule this morning with a devotional focus on the differences of children who live in poverty versus those who live in affluence. How can we minister effectively to children in need without creating a legacy of dependence, especially in the context of the Rybnoe orphanage? Although no definitive solutions were found, we discussed many ideas of how to approach trips in the future.

With fresh-fallen snow on the ground, the planned snowman-building contest was moved indoors for an exciting session of group games including the human knot, capture the flag, sharks and minnows, and blob tag. Children from 8 to 18 joined the fun and games. Most surprisingly, with the variety of age ranges, all children played together cooperatively and without incindent.

Day 5Today’s drama, featured the next stage of Jesus’ younger years. Joseph and Mary took Jesus on a journey to Jerusalem, but on the way back discovered he was missing. After 3 days, they found him teaching in the temple courts. The several children who participated in the drama remembered the scene well and quickly answered questions that followed the drama. Story-telling time concluded with Carolyn giving her testimony.

After lunch, the team left for Ryazan to visit Fund Nadezhda, the in-country ministry center of Children’s’ Hope Chest that provides graduates of the Rybnoe orphanage a safe place to go while they attend university.  The center offers counseling services as well as a computer lab and recreation center for students as they transition into life outside the orphanage.

When the team returned, the women began preparing for the Girls’ Party. More than 30 girls from 8 to 16 showed up to get their nails done, experiment with lotions and make-up, and have their hair styled. Since we didn’t have mirrors for the girls in the room, they began to work together to apply each other’s make-up. Some of the girls had never

Day 5During the Girls’ Party, the men enjoyed a real Russian Sauna, complete with a full meal, several visits in a hot steam sauna and trips to cool off in the snow – a Russian tradition. This gave the men an opportunity to visit and get to know teachers and former graduates of the orphanage as well as hear about their personal experiences of growing up in Russia during Soviet Times.