Today was a wonderful and much-needed day of rest and relaxation, starting with worship at the Christian Church in Ostróda. The worship leader had a heads-up that there would be Americans there and purposefully chose songs we would probably know. I just love being able to sing along in English as I hear the same worship lifted up in Polish and Ukrainian. Our God understands and welcomes our worship in any language.
We had the treat of eating out at a local pizza place and then getting lody (ice cream) while we walked along the lake. It’s so beautiful. I always enjoy that. I crashed when we got back to camp and took a LONG nap (apparently I was tired).
Even better than pizza, ice cream and a good Sunday nap… my friend Iwona came to the camp to see me and let me see her two beautiful children, Zosia and Basia. She lost her son Staṡ at birth, and Sandy Hatfield introduced us after hearing us share about our Grace. It has been a joy to write to her and see her once a year since then. It is a blessing to celebrate her daughters with her, and to have been able to pray for her and encourage her through two fearful pregnancies. She is so dear to me, and my time with her this afternoon was a joy.
We also enjoyed a puppet show put on by the kids and a movie night/sleep over. I hope this day of rest refreshed my mind, spirit and body, because tomorrow it all gets crazy. We have two days to finish projects and prepare for the arrival of the Ukrainian children. Life is about to get very intense, and there will be no more breaks until we are about ready to head home. Also, I think today marks the half way point of our mission. 🙁 It always goes so fast.
Here’s what Ben has been working on… repurposing old dock boards into new dock boards.
My apologies for not posting yesterday. It amazes me how many are actually reading these and are disappointed when I miss a day. Thank you. It’s encouraging.
I didn’t get to participate much in yesterday’s church service. The local congregation came to Ostroda Camp and joined the 60-something guests that were already here for a service in the chapel. This put the little building at more than capacity, so the moms and kids were outside the chapel in the yard. So I couldn’t hear or see much (not that I would have understood it anyway!) I did get to sing along with a couple of hymns I recognized, adding my English words to the beautiful Polish. I love that.
After the main service, the crowd moved to the lake where we witnessed and celebrated 8 baptisms. I saw one of the ladies before the service and knew she was one who would be baptized that day by the long white gown she was wearing. Another good sign was her abounding joy! She could hardly contain herself and was going arounds saying good morning to everyone, including me, with hugs and smiles. After the baptisms, we had a cookout complete with kielbasa (yum) and some great desserts (yum, yum). I tried, but didn’t do so well with the spicy cabbage stuff.
The “Holiday With The Bible” guests left yesterday. This was a group of retirees from Poland, sponsored by Impact Europe. We didn’t get to be involved with this group since we arrived after their camp was underway and Ben was gone the rest of it, but this is the group that Ben participated in on his first trip to Poland in 2009. We now have a couple of days to prepare the camp for the Holocaust survivors who will arrive Tuesday evening. So today is laundry, cleaning, grounds keeping and bed-making!