We’re here! Our 26 hour journey back was exhausting, but went smoothly – van, plane, train, bus, plane, train, foot, train, bus, van….geesh! We were happy see Sandy waiting for us at the airport to help us get to Ostróda (thank you, Sandy!), and happy to find the entire Korytkowski family came to pick us up at the bus stop. Then there were hugs from Oksana, Sasha, Tanya, Maxim, Kazik and the returning members of the Savannah team. It felt like coming home in a sense. We arrived during the final session for the Holocaust Survivors’ camp. We were so sad that we weren’t able to spend time with them this year, but encouraged to hear that it was a good week. Most of this year’s group were new people we’ve never met, but Oksana told me this morning that one of the ladies had been before and was wearing one of the bracelets I made and gave them then. She was asked about it during the week and shared with the whole group that she wears that bracelet to remind her of the good time she had when she was here. ♥ That makes my heart so happy!
This morning we said goodbye to them and worshipped at Ostróda Christian Church. Ben stood and gave his greetings to the congregation from us and Rockville Christian Church. (I just love that… just like in Paul’s letters). Pastor Zbigniew welcomed us back and said that he thinks we belong as much to them as RCC. Awe. How sweet. It was great to see the familiar faces of the congregation, but sad that there were so few of them. Our group (us along with the team from Savannah Christian, the interns and interpreters and Korytkowski family) probably tripled the attendance. Please pray for this congregation. I think they are fighting some struggle and need the prayer support of their brothers and sisters in Christ. Pray also for Beata, a wonderful lady in the congregation that we’ve met several times. She helped organize the event we held a couple of years ago on losing an infant, and helped with last year’s Ukrainian Children’s Camp. She is currently fighting cancer and is in the hospital. I was very sad to learn of this recent diagnosis and the terrible road she’s had of late. She is just in her mid 40’s. Please pray for her.
The remainder of the day was mostly R&R, which we really needed to regain some of what we lost during the trip here. This included Ethan getting buried so deep in the volleyball court sand that Kyle (new camp staff) had to help dig him out! We did collect trash and linens around the grounds, but that was no big deal. After dinner we gathered in the chapel to watch Woodlawn (great movie, by the way). Now it’s time for sleep. Andrzej has a LONG list of work projects for us tomorrow as we prepare for the arrival of the Forever Young group and the camp’s 45th Anniversary celebration!