Liberian "Christmas"

Today was a busy day--though I have a feeling I’ll write that every day.

Emmanuel picked us up in the morning and drove us straight to the orphanage. Our “plan” was to celebrate the kids (their birthdays, Christmas, and just being together again) and I’d say we were very successful. After a short program of welcome, we distributed packages to the kids from their sponsor families. Such fun! Most of the children know their sponsor families by name, and were excited to see updated pictures and read their letters. The children who were “meeting” their sponsor families for the first time were full of questions and seemed slightly befuddled that there was a family across the ocean that loves them and prays for them. So fun!

This afternoon, Julie accompanied Emmanuel downtown to the Echo Bank where they had to withdraw money for Eve’s visa. We keep getting closer and closer! While they were gone, Brian and Allan worked on the generator and did some basic maintenance, Carol spent a lot of time with the teachers, and Jana and Nicole updated child profiles for the sponsorship program. It was a bit like herding cats, and very difficult to have a steady hand for taking pictures when there were a dozen kids hanging on the photographer (I know from experience--sorry if the new photos of your sponsor kids are blurry!). The rest of the time was spent playing and cuddling, wading in the ocean and just enjoying each other’s company. Beyond wonderful.

A few miscellaneous prayer requests...

-Tomorrow Carol and Nicole kick off the two-day teachers’ conference. We are very excited, but a little nervous, too. The twelve teachers at the Vine School System of Christ (yes, the school underwent a recent name change) are beyond competent teachers--they’re brilliant, articulate, well-rounded people. Carol and I are hoping that we have something worthwhile to offer them. We want to bless them so much! But it’s so hard to know what to do when we’re (quite literally) half a world apart.

-Brian, Jana, and Allan will be heading to Harbel (a sister church) with Emmanuel tomorrow. Pray for safety and for the Lord to reveal what he wants for this amazing church! We love Harbel and Abraham (the pastor) and we are praying that God will show us the perfect partner congregation for Harbel in the US.

-Julie’s day tomorrow will consist of getting the new medical program off the ground. We’ve all met Sarah, the amazing nurse who will be working with the kids, and we’re so excited to watch this continue to progress.

-Of course, Eve’s situation requires constant prayer. She seems to be doing very well right now--she’s happy and spirited and she runs around and plays with the other kids--but she also has long periods of lethargy and loves to be carried and held. Nothing about her situation has changed (she still can’t swallow), but for now the little nutrition she’s getting is sustaining her.

-Pray for our health and well-being! We all feel great so far, but we’d like to keep it that way.

Thanks for reading! Sending love and hugs from Liberia!