CANFORD MAGNA CHURCHES - MISSION TO ROMANIA
Well, we’re approaching the end of February and no winter here to speak of so far – just a lot of rain! Likewise, Reghin in Romania has had a very “soft” winter to date with hardly any snow and only moderate frost – which is good news if you just have a small wood-burning stove in the corner of one room to heat the whole house and no spare money to buy extra firewood.
On 17 January we welcomed Pauline and Ronald Wolthuis here for a flying visit whilst they were in England attending a family wedding at Lymington. I know quite a few of you managed to get along to hear Ronald speak and meet them briefly either at the St Barnabas morning service or in the Lantern Hub that afternoon. Thank you so much to those who contributed towards a substantial love gift - they, along with all the other Dutch and American members of the Phoneo team in Reghin, are volunteers – solely supported by family and churches back home. It was really great to have them with us and we’re hoping that they’ll be able to come again and stay longer, later in the year. During a “whistle-stop tour” they spent five minutes in the Parish Church which they really loved and I know Ronald looks forward to speaking to the congregation there, as well as at the Lantern and again at St Barnabas!
Right now we’re starting to think and plan for the coming year :–
On 7 May or thereabouts, Walter will be leading a small team who will continue building the second floor walls and start on the roof construction of the new Selah School building. For this visit we need more people with building skills so if you know of anyone who may be interested then do please ask them to get in touch ASAP.
We are then aiming to send two more teams - one each in June and September. Anyone, with any skills or no skills at all will be very welcome on either of these visits when we shall be helping to finish the school [decorating; fitting doors, windows etc and generally being useful]. Also, and very importantly, there will numerous other opportunities such as working with children [at Casa Ana and in the existing small school]; neighbourhood visits; Adapost centre for the homeless; day care; home groups etc etc.
For answers to your inevitable questions and to enable us to plan properly, do please pray and if possible, come along to an open afternoon on Sunday 13 March at the Lantern Hub from 3 to 4-30pm. If you’re not able to come but need more information, then please get in touch beforehand. You won’t be making any commitment at this stage but we really do need to know what human resources may be available.
I feel it’s worth repeating the following extract from Phoneo’s 2013-2018 Business Plan:
Selah Junior school assistance project
Selah Junior is situated in Petelea and focusses on children of primary school age whose home situations make it very difficult for them to develop a good school routine and to keep up at school. The kids that are admitted to this program all come from very poor families where the parents are not able to provide school supplies and school clothing. Many of the parents have had hardly any education themselves or are completely illiterate which makes it impossible for them to support their children in doing their homework [in Romania homework is an essential part of the school system, starting from the lowest classes].
All of these children have difficulties with the Romanian language, this is due to the fact that their native language is Roma – a language completely unrelated to the Romanian taught and used in schools. Selah Junior helps these children with school supplies and clothes and helps them prepare for school each day. Besides this, the children receive extensive assistance with their homework and remedial teaching. The children also receive meals at the project.
It’s such an amazing project, it will make a huge difference and fully deserves our fullest support.
So far no mention of Little John’s House. We have yet to make a final decision about sending anyone there this year to help with their Summer School. If no-one goes, it is our intention to make a donation towards their Land Appeal in lieu of monies we would otherwise have to spend on subsidizing the very high air fares during August.
Finally, any comments you have will always be very welcome.
With every blessing
John Clift [01202 884043] 21 February 2016