Greetings from Belarus. The winter holidays are over (here we celebrate from mid-December till mid January) and we are blessed to share all the good news in the ministry. The temperature is minus 8 F and we have snow above knee, but we do not freeze as our hearts are warmed by what God is doing.
This holiday season we visited about 285 kids in 7 different places. We brought Christmas gifts, shared Christmas stories, showed theater performances, and performed concerts.
All began with preparing gifts for orphans. We bought sweets, toys and people from our church gathered a lot of stuff for us as well. Boys from Timothy House helped packing gifts in shoe boxes and on December 13th we started.
Radoshkovichi orphanage has 117 kids . We brought gifts for all of them and we invited a Christian band to do a program, and our volunteers dressed up in costumes of Mary, Joseph, shepherds, wise men to show Jesus story.
Borovlyanya shelter has 41 kids We brought a Christian theater with puppets, a lot of music, songs and all the kids were able to participate in songs; it was great. Gifts were so much appreciated. Each gift had something sweet, toys, socks, hat, mittens, school supplies, shampoo, toothpaste, soap. It will go a long way.
We also bought and installed 2 new windows for Borovlyani shelter. The windows are for a bedroom. It was very cold there and now it’s warm and cozy.
Stankovo shelter has 12 kids and for them we have prepared special private gifts. Children drew pictures of what they would like to get for Christmas and we have prepared those gifts for them. We shared Jesus story, made some crafts and we brought food for them for Christmas table, that we shared together. It was great. Besides in December we did our usual fair with a lot of goodies for the kids. The younger kids chose toys, while the older kids got clothes and immediately put it on.
Zhitkovichi (Greben) school and foster family has 61 kids. Christian youth theater from our church went with us to do the performance. Our van was packed with people, decorations, gifts and used clothes, shoes that we have collected for the school.
The program was great and at the end we had a chance to pray with children. Then we gave them gifts. Those were the only gifts they got .
And on December 25th Irina, the director, with her family and the foster family of Lidia drove all the way from Zhitkovichi to come to our church for Christmas celebration and we shared a meal afterwards. It was a great time of sharing God’s love.
There is a shelter in Minsk that has 12 kids. We brought cookies and sweets for them and very nice gifts. The Minsk Family Home girls decided to make weekly visits to the shelter.
And another exciting event took place on January 6th (that’s Orthodox Christmas ) we got 46 tickets to the performance “Road to Bethlehem.” Kids from a Minsk orphanage (the name is Children’s Town), from the shelter and from village foster families came to the theater.
After the program kids went to McDonald’s to continue celebrate Christmas.
Family Home News
This season we celebrated two birthdays. Our leader of the girls home, Alla, turned 23. The girls themselves made a fancy cake for Alla. And another girl Lena turned 17. It was a fun birthday and also everyone shared words of encouragements for Lena. At the end girls went out to play in the snow.
In December Lean, Sveta , Alena from MFH and Lesha from TH received diplomas for finishing Youth Bible School “Step by Step” and in January Lesha was water baptized. We are very excited about that.
Thank you all for your prayers and your support.
1. Please pray for our health. All our family got sick with flue and it lasted for about 3 weeks. We need strength.
2. As summer is coming, we would like to start making plans for camps. We need prayers, funds to pay for kids to go to camp and teams. If you are interested please contact us.
3. At the Minsk Family Home we have 7 girls now, and we need to expand. We are praying for another MFH for girls.