Saturday, July 15, 2017

Day 10 of Ukraine Trip

At about 20 minutes to 4 pm my time, I had nearly given up on getting to talk to Mitch again today. But within a few minutes, he texted me--even though it was nearly midnight his time. He said they had been super busy packing gift bags for all the volunteers (35), and that Heather is awesome at that! (p.s. Calvary family, that's what all the peanut butter and brown sugar was for, plus more items).

They had a quiet morning today. At some point they drove back out to the sunflower field for more pictures and to record a message for our church family. That will play tomorrow, so I'm not going to post it until then. But you can see the great pictures! They also went shopping this morning for food and supplies.

 {Oksana and Heather at breakfast}

 {Victoria modeling for a fun drink they enjoy}

{Heather and Zhenya's garden}

{As promised, Mitch got me a tour of Zhenya's hot house}

 {Zhenya and Grigorii, this must be one of my favorite pictures from the whole week!}


{The American Team: Mitch, Victoria, Heather}

{With the translators: Mitch, AJ, Victoria, Heather, and Oksana}

{A group panorama: Mitch, _____, Zhenya, Grigorii, Miroslav, Vitalik, Heather, Oksana, Victoria, Oksana, Nazar, Anya}

{With Pastor's family: Mitch, Zhenya, Grigorii, Miroslav, Vitalik, Heather, Nazar, Victoria, Oksana}

After lunch, the team had a planning meeting at church. Then the quest began at 4 pm. The teens were given a goal and specific do's and don'ts to follow. It was a like a scavenger hunt, but with a beginning and ending point. Volunteers were hidden throughout town. The teens were supposed to accomplish certain tasks, but they didn't know which volunteers would be helpful, or which would be distractions. 

 {Victoria was dressed up like a Бабуся (Babusya...or grandmother). If the teens sacrificed some of their resources to help her, they would earn points. Conversely, one volunteer was dressed up like a drunk. If they helped him, they would lose points}

 {On the way}

Mitch, AJ, and his niece Sasha were on a team at the college who would distract kids. They had soda, cookies, and football. They tried to get them to stop and play...and delay reaching their goal.

 {Sasha is holding up the "money" they used in the game--a pretzel spray painted with gold paint. Creative!}

This is the group of teens that Mitch and company lured into their net!
 Mitch told AJ, "stall as long as you can. Take a long time to get a good picture." Haha.

 {Bogdan in part of his crazy costume--Mitch didn't get the picture until after he had washed off his face makeup, but you can kind of see it up above in the "on the way" photo--he's in the back on the left.}

The quest took a little longer than they expected, but they met back at the church eventually.

There they talked about the quest and what the symbols meant, and the application to their real lives. Mitch said Heather did a great job sharing during this part.
Afterward, they had treats--lots of yummy treats like Reese's cups--and they played volleyball until after 9pm.
After a week of looking through blog posts, do you recognize any faces yet?

The team had one last late supper all together. Look how beautiful the table is set!

Tomorrow morning they will have another church service. During the service, they will show a video from camp. Heather, Victoria, and Mitch will all speak before the church. They will share their gratitude and praises from the week. Mitch will encourage our brothers and sisters in Christ to keep on working while we are gone, to spread the Gospel. They will also present the volunteers with the gift bags. 

After church they are having a picnic.

Tomorrow night they will have a time of singing, playing games, and praying together. The team leaves Horol at 1 a.m. to arrive in Kiev for their flights. Heather and Victoria leave Kiev around 7 a.m. and Mitch leaves around 11 a.m.

Thank you so much for joining us on this journey to Horol! Please be in prayer for the church tonight as they begin a final day together. And don't forget to keep praying for the Horol church throughout the year.


  1. Sorry for a few comments here. Since 1992, our organization does ministry work to serve the least, lost and last in Ukraine. Today, our work focuses on the lives of orphans, their families and the community in which they live. Please visit our site to find out more about our work.