I can only show a few of the pics I took at the Orphan's and Widow's Home because so many of the children are waiting for their forever families to come get them or are waiting to be referred.
The pics I do have are all in a hodgepodge, these 2 1/2 days were all kind of the same thing over again, but it was good stuff!! :o)
We arrived at the Orphans and Widows Home on Saturday night.
We were greeted with huge hugs and kisses from the children and widows alike, it was like coming home after a long visit away. We were immediately invited in and made to feel welcome.
We played with the children, spoke to the widows, shared our gifts and answered a prayer. Tezera, the woman who runs the compound shared with us that they were down to their last can and a half before running out and we arrived with over 100lbs of formula. There were 11 tiny babies there... Praise God for miracles!
We had an amazing dinner, shared a few songs and then went to our hotel for a sleep.
Sunday we all got up and got ready for church. I realized I had left my slip in the guest house in Addis so I had to wear a pair of capri's under my skirt...lol not flattering and way hot, but wanted to look presentable for church. ;o)
We got to the compound to pick up the widows, the church was only about 2 blocks away, but they felt like royalty arriving in high style in our bus. :o)
We found out that church wasn't ready for us so we walked back to the compound and Tezera shared her story with us, about how the Widows and Orphan's home came to be. You can read that here.
When she was done we went back to church. At first it was really pretty awesome to be worshipping with them! They were singing and praising God, they were just giving it all to Him. I had no clue what they were saying but I sure understood the praise! I just closed my eyes and praised with them.
We then got to listen to a 45 min to an hour sermon...in Amharic. I am sure it was powerful! I know there were alot of "Alleluia AMEN" s ... but other than that I have no clue what he said. If he was speaking in English though he so could have fit in a good Southern Baptist church here in VA. :o) He was great... just wish I knew what he said! We were all parched and worn out by the time it was over. SO glad we went though. It was too cool to see the spirit move in this church not so different from one in the US. ;o)
After church was lunch.
Then a prayer for 2 of the widows that lived in the compound. They both have lived horrendous lives and are dealing mentally with the aftermath. We were asked to pray over them and with them to remove the pain from them. So we did. It was powerful. A little uncomfortable to be honest... I have never been a part of that kind of prayer... but I was honored to be asked to be a part of it. You can't look at these women's faces and not know that they have scars so deep only our Savior can heal them.
We then were taken to the new facility being built. We were supposed to work on it this trip, but they aren't as far along as they should be so we were only able to get a glimpse of the building. It's going to be a wonderful and large place for them all. They sure need the space.
Shopping was on the agenda next and then back to the hotel. Me and a few of the guys went exploring in the city while the others went to the pool or took naps. It was a good day.
Monday was great fun. We didn't do anything.
We went to the O&WH and just played with the children, did crafts, talked about the bible, held babies and basically made relationships. It was such a great day!
There were at least 3 babies under 2 months old. All abandoned...all baby girls. Oh my heart! You better believe I loved on those baby's all that I could! They would make me put one down and I would pick up another one...lol I so wanted to just breathe life into them, speak love and grace over them while I could. The nannies were a little overwhelmed with them all so I wanted to...even for just a day... let those sweet souls know that someone treasured them and wanted them. I also got to play with my 2 friends D and M. They are both 10 both being adopted to the U.S. D is beautiful! Just beautiful inside and out, he followed me every where. He would come check where I was, then run off...lol SO SO sweet. And M... oh M. He is so going to bless his new family. He was just a light. He smiled and you just had to smile with him. The babies even lit up when he walked into the room. I will always remember him. I haven't stopped praying for him since the day we met.
I hope someday I can let his new family know what an impact he made on my life.
We stayed at the compound until about 6pm and then had to leave. This was the hardest good bye. M sobbed when we hugged good bye, he would not let go. Can I just tell you that my heart was ripping out of my chest... I told him over and over that not too much longer and his new family would be there and would love him forever... that I would love him forever. Soon..... soon....how does that translate to a little boy who's heart is so ready to be loved forever?
Here are some pics... in random order. :o)
These are of the new building, it's amazing how they build things.
I actually climbed these stairs and walked around the 2nd floor. It's here that Tezera and I found that we both hate heights and also when other people get too close to the edge. :o)
Our biggest guy...with the littlest.
Tezera in her apron... from her story. It's sure a phenomenal story!
The church sign.
From my sweet friend....
Our celebration bread.... it was very thick, tasted mildly like sour dough. It was yummy! We were all dreaming about olive oil, sun dried tomatoes, olives... all manner of dipping options to go with this yummy bread. :o)
Tim made this widow one of our beaded bracelets. This is one of the women that we prayed for.... she has such a sweet smile. It breaks my heart to know the pain she's lived with and still does.
Tezera and I... see can multitask... feed a baby, and hug a new dear friend.
This is her oldest son. He's a really great young man. He's 18 and in university. We all exchanged email with him, and he asked for my son's as well so that they might become pen pals.
This is the verse that led me to believe God meant for us to adopt E. And here it is on their wall. :o)
This is the other young lady we prayed for.... my mom and made up about 25 kits for the women... wash cloths, toothbrushes, hygiene stuff and we were able to share them. The women LOVED it!
Playing with bubbles.
Our next stop is the village of Gutumuhma.... another life changing... unforgettable day....more to come....