Friday, July 14, 2017

Day 9 of trip, Final day of VBS Kids' Camp in Ukraine

I have many beautiful pictures to share tonight from the last day of kids' camp and from the team's trip out to the village. Sorry for the long delay. Today was the first day that I finally was able to make head-way on my to-do list. Once I caught that momentum, I didn't want to stop!

I seriously have so many pictures, I'm not sure where to start. :)

Our team started out the day at VBS and Mitch provided some pre-exercise entertainment by juggling.

Sports in the gym again...

Uno Relay...

Like I mentioned yesterday, the groups had a special presentation for the parents today during the closing assembly. This group of students learned a skit put to music and performed it for the parents. One of the volunteers taught them.

Heather and Victoria were helping lead this song (next 3 pictures). 

Mitch said that he wasn't really prepared ahead of time for this talk. He knew that he was going to do it, but he was not clear on what he should say. (I've been in his shoes--that's hard! And he is normally nervous anyway about speaking). He said while he was waiting to go up, John 14 came to mind. And when he went up to speak, it just all came out. He didn't have the nervousness, and he felt like he was saying exactly what God wanted him to say.
{Heather sent me this photo}

After camp was over, our team had gift bags ready for the kids. The bags are reusable, and inside were all kinds of goodies--things Heather ordered from Oriental Trading, plus candy and snacks.
 {Mitch, Oksana, Heather, Victoria}

Silliness while waiting...

 {Oksana, still waiting...}

 {Watching a presentation...I think Pastor's daughter Oksana put that together}

 {Here they come finally!}

Mitch said that the kids were SO thankful to receive their bags. Out of gratitude, some children even opened their gifts and chose gifts to give back to the leaders. ::Oh my heart:: 

And lots of group photos...

 {Mitch with Bogdan, one of the volunteers this week}

 {AJ's niece Sasha, Mitch, and Tanya's sister Ula}

 {Nazar and Mitch}

{Victoria sent me these two precious photos}

This evening the team went back out to the village. They played a capture the flag game. Mitch was on a team, but under the pretense of taking pictures, he waltzed right around to the other team's side of the field, took their flag, stuffed it into his pocket, then walked back onto his side...all while playing "photographer". Then he held the flag up and proclaimed triumphantly, "Game over."

On the way home, they stopped at this sunflower field to take some more group photos
{In back: Mitch, Tanya, Anya, Nazar, Victoria, Oksana, Nastia, Bogdan
In front: AJ, Heather}

{Mitch, Heather, AJ, Tanya, Anya, Nazar, Victoria, Oksana, Nastia, Pastor Grigorii}
Tanya is a volunteer who also leads a regular Saturday program called Truth Seekers
Anya is Pastor's niece, who came to Horol to help with camp this week
Nastia is also a volunteer
 {Mitch and Sergiy}

While they were on the side of the road taking pictures, another van passed, honked the horn, then backed up. Friends tumbled out and they joined in the photo taking. :)
 {Luda, Victoria, Nazar, Grigorii, AJ, Mitch, Sergiy, Tanya, Heather, Catia, Oksana, Nastia, Nalya, Catia (Sergiy's daughter), Vica, Anya}

(many apologies for spelling names wrong!!)
{Mitch, Bogdan, Sergiy}

{Nazar, Pastor Girgorii, Oksana}

 {Victoria and Nazar}

Victoria sent me these photos too. :)

{Anya, Tanya, Victoria, Vica}

I asked Mitch if they had enough bags today and he told me an amazing story. They did have enough bags for the VBS kids' camp. They took the remaining bags with them out to the village. Sergiy and Luda also had some Operation Christmas Child boxes for the children in the village. (Unbelievably exciting for me to hear!!!) They had EXACTLY enough bags and boxes. They were short one bag, but they had the gifts that went inside the bag. Another boy came forward and said he did not really want his bag, and gave it to the child who did not have a bag. It worked out PERFECTLY. Amazing! 

Mitch also sent me some videos, but I am going to publish this without the videos because I have to work on the html code for those. I'm sort of antsy and feel like I'm out of time. LOL If I feel like it later, I'll write a separate post.

Tomorrow the team's agenda begins with a late breakfast (hoping to let Zhenya sleep in). They will do some shopping and packing. At 4 pm they have the teen night. The teens will have a quest, similar to a scavenger hunt. Volunteers will be hidden all around the city. They will be there to provide clues, or to cause distractions. The teens will have choices to make when they find the volunteers. By 6 pm they will meet back at church, where a wider group of children are invited to come also. They will hang out and play some volleyball Mitch said. Heather also brought some really yummy American treats for the night.

Prayer requests:
  • The scavenger hunt begins at 8 am our time. Pray for the teens when you are waking up tomorrow morning.
  • Pray for Heather and Victoria to be able to rest well before they begin their long (exhausting) journey home. (Mitch is making a short jump over to Germany, and he'll come home a week later).
  • Please continue to pray for Zhenya's back, and for AJ to feel better (he is travelling to a nearby city to see a doctor for an insect bite on his arm), and for Oksana (the translator).

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