What makes our annual Christmas in Moldova mission trip so very special?
In addition to the birth of the Christ-child, the original Christmas story includes several poignant elements. Inconvenience and hardship; an austere setting; an annunciation by angels; a long journey in search of the child, punctuated by the giving of gifts; and the slaughter of the innocents (those boys two years old and younger living in Bethlehem who were sacrificed on the altar of Herod’s ambition…this is our Christmas heritage.
Now consider our Christmas in Moldova mission trip. Volunteers who sacrifice their family and holiday time and finances; who leave the warmth of hearth and home to travel to this cold and obscure country in search of children who, like Jesus, are considered “stricken, smitten of God and afflicted;” who live in grim orphanages, made even more lonely when their friends leave to spend the holiday with a family member. These are the same orphanages that warehoused children for decades before giving an ungodly number of them up to human traffickers who ravished their souls – 47,000 of them in just the past 20 years! – the slaughter of the innocents.
At last, those volunteers arrive. They come bearing gifts. They bring with them the smiles and warm hugs of Christ. The musical glad tidings of great joy echo down stark, concrete hallways, and those abandoned children are reminded once again that they are not forgotten; that they are loved and celebrated by these strangers from America who bear the unmistakable image of a heavenly Father.
You know what Christmas can become here…the materialism and commercialism…the exchange of gifts that meet wants and not needs…the almost complete exclusion of Christ from Christmas. What sounds more appealing in the deepest recesses of your soul?
On December 27th, we will have a team taking Christmas to between six and nine orphanages in Moldova. Those kids need you. Do you need them?
Next Sunday, November 11th, we will begin collecting sweat suits, warm socks (black and colors, nothing white), knit hats, leather or waterproof gloves, thermal underwear, winter scarves and warm pajamas to take to the orphans as Christmas presents. We ask that you provide only new items because we don’t want to communicate that they are worth anything less than their value to God. A crate will be stationed at the JMI booth in the WareHouse for your contributions.For those who can’t go this year, you can still Warm Their Hearts.
Special note to sponsors: If you want to send a special gift to your sponsored child, in addition to the gifts from our Warm Their Hearts clothes collection, please be sure it is small, light and doesn’t cost over $25. DO NOT WRAP IT or it will be torn open at Customs. Please DO INDICATE THE CHILD’S NAME, YOUR NAME AND THE CHILD’S ORPHANAGE.
If you’re interested in joining the Christmas in Moldova mission team (Dec. 27-Jan. 3),contact firstname.lastname@example.org for more details .
Missions Pastor, Rolling Hills Community Church
E.D., Justice and Mercy International
1810 Columbia Ave., Ste. 100
Franklin, TN 37064