Thursday, April 17, 2008

Day Six - Ukraine Trip

Today, Day Six, we traveled to Stari Zburivska to see the 13 kids that came to Colorado in December. We also want to see the 8 kids that are coming this July-August. We pull up and immediately the kids start showing up outside. They don't usually get visitors because they are so remote. We see Natashia, the soon to be director. She knows us, having been one of the caretakers last December. We are expected and they are all happy to see us. We see all the familiar faces and smiles from the hosting trip. Suddenly and to my surprise, a little guy grabs me around the waist and gives me a big hug. I look down and it is Ruslan, the little boy who stayed in my house along with four others (R & Z included). He say "Hi" and lean down to hug him. He starts crying tear of joy and we hold each other for a few minutes. All the other kids see this and surround us. We are enveloped by a hundred kids or so.

We see the facility, join a birthday celebration for all kids born in April, and have lunch with Natashia in her office. We get a meet and greet event with just the 13 kids from December and the 8 kids coming. We take lots of pictures and spend a couple of hours catching up. The boys get letters from UOO folks and we share a treat of candy we brought. AGAPE invites us to sit in on a Bible class they sponsor. It is good to see the word of God being given to young kids. When it's time t go, we do so hesitantly and it takes awhile. Many hugs and kisses are given by the kids and us. They event is emotionally charged and was a gift from God.

We travel back to Kherson and go to church with the president of AGAPE, Alex (Sasha). We have hung out with him at most of his events and we will do a special post later about him. We meet Marianna, the lady who stayed in our house last December with the kids. She invites us to dinner and to stay with her at her house in Kherson for the night. We take her up on her offer and spend the evening catching up and sharing information. She has a church in her home and she and her husband conduct services. She has a beautiful family. We shower, go to bed, and wake up to our next adventure, traveling to Odessa to see Rimma.

1 comment:

Debbie said...

I'm so excited for the eight kids to come this summer! We would love to spend some time with you and them! Is that Ruslan in the top photo? He's adorable. Is anyone pursuing his adoption? I find myself wanting to pray for these kids, and praying for them by name seems so much more personal.

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Longmont, Colorado, United States
Heidi loves to play sand volleyball, sail and garden. Felix loves to fly at the local aeroclub, sail and fish.