Monday, Monday!

Trip Start Jun 21, 2006
Trip End Jul 04, 2006

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Monday, June 26, 2006

Today was the first full camp day. It was filled with activities! The kids took part in several craft projects like making hackysacks (foot bags), designing animal cutouts and painting backdrops to be used in a drama later this week. During music lessons the children learned some new songs and were introduced to the theme song written specifically for this camp.

It's inspiring to watch their progression not only through the activities, but through the fun we see them having. Lots of smiling is going on! Whether it's jumping into the icy creek, swinging high on the large stand-up platform swing, or having a conversation with a new friend, they are growing right before our eyes. What a wonderful thing to be a part of!

Harry's Blog Contribution

Analytical by nature and training, I cannot avoid reflecting on the cost/benefit ratio of our mission. Does it make sense for 18 of us to travel more than 3000 miles (one way) to work with 24 inner city and rural children for a week of churchy camp?

We have not repaired cleft palates, extracted abscessed teeth, matched seeing impaired with discarded bifocals or constructed a building. We are not trained social workers or psycho-therapists, but an eclectic group ranging from junior high to geezer.

The brain and heart of the project (and the Lighthouse Children's Center) is a middle-aged Estonian woman with a full time passion for God, her family and these children without hope. Her name is Mall.

Mall says that she sees individual lives moved toward God and social responsibility--movements which would not occur except in this context. In three days, she sees one child with serious family trouble unselfconsciously initiate a conversation with an adult, a new happening. She sees another look people in the eye, another new development. When the children played Pachelbel Canon in D on multi-color coded handbells, she was especially moved, because she knew how far they had come. Over years, she sees children grow up and turn from a life of on the streets to joyful and productive adults.

In calculating the bottom line, the product is fruit--love, joy peace, patience, kindness, self-control. Multiply by eternity. Add the blessings which come to us. The cost suddenly seems inconsequential compared to the benefits.
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