Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Update from the Previous Post ( or see below)

As promised here is the official announcement regarding the Christmas Eve offering. As mention below this placed a joy in our hearts and is great news all around. We had hoped to build a church in the gypsy village and now this will be coming to fruition:

From Cole Willig (Worship Pastor at Fork Christian Church)

We love that, as a church, we get to send out 100% of what is brought in through the Christmas Eve Offering. This year we have an opportunity to partner with Remember the Children and Daniel Bagosi and Claudia Bagosi to help fund the construction of a church building for the Roma Gypsy people of Santandrei, Romania.

If you would like to partner with Fork Christian Church, but cannot give in person on Christmas Eve you may give online: https://forkchristianchurch

Monday, December 21, 2015

Finding Christmas

     I must admit to being in a funk for the past two weeks after returning from Romania. It gets harder each year coming back to the states. It is tough leaving behind friends and relationships when you know it will be a year before you can return. It is hard coming home to all that we have when you have seen those with so little. It smacks you in the face when you see the commercialism that Christmas has become in the states. Over there at least there seems to be a deeper meaning to Christ's birth. I certainly was not looking forward with a lot of excitement to the coming holiday. My attitude was "lets just get this over with". However I will declare that yesterday at church I found Christmas for this year. 

     I can't really go into a lot of specifics at this point until everything comes totally together and everyone is properly notified. ( I will post the update when everything is completed) However, I can tell you enough for you to understand my JOY. Part of the softening of my heart began Friday night as I attended a live nativity. That was cool and brought the story more alive. Next Karen and I spent two nights working with Remember the Children at a local church. They had built a replica of a gypsy home to allow people to walk through and learn more about the ministry. 
This just allowed me to reflect and relive my trip to Romania with them. Serving with RtC was softening my heart a bit more. 
Finally on Sunday morning my heart was fully opened. Each year our church, Fork Christian, gives 100% of the Christmas Eve offering to a ministry. Last year we were able to raise money for a camp in Romania. This year the plan was to give the offering to a group looking to establish a church in Frederick, Maryland. Of course we could not easily ask our congregation to again give to Romania. Ministry dollars should be spread around. Two years ago after our first mission trip to Romania we had a dream that God has put on hold. Now know that God has perfect timing and his own plan. Late last week the church leadership was notified that the Frederick project was going to be placed on hold. This creates a dilemma that must be quickly addressed. The church can't collect funds for something that will not be happening anytime soon. They prayed for God to bring something to the forefront and quickly. Enter our worship pastor who threw out an idea. This is where I cannot get too specific with details but the idea was prayed over and accepted. On Sunday it was announced to the congregation the problem that had occurred and the solution. Let me state that with the announcement many of us were overjoyed that dreams and prayers would be answered. 

     I found my Christmas in many ways. I know that on a personal level my joy is back because a dream is being answered. [Best gift ever] I also feel blessed that my church and its leadership truly have a heart for the least of these. Finally I know that the real meaning of Christmas is alive and will be lived out in many ways through this Christmas offering. I am always so blessed when I see God's hand in things. It is always about His timing and His will.  I hope you too will find your Christmas this year! Blessings <><

Tuesday, December 8, 2015


I must apologize to my blog here. It sits and waits for me to expound on my thoughts. It waits patiently for me to come back and breathe life into it. I have been neglectful and as result it has suffered. Honestly I have an index card filled with topics that I think about and wish to share. However the pace of life often stops me from really sitting down and just sharing. This blog started just prior to my second visit to Honduras. It's purpose at that time was to share my journey and ministry. Six years have passed and though my focus is the same my ministry has expanded. As I have grown the blog has diminished.

    I did refocus several years ago and changed the blog from Sharing Compassion to Sharing Compassion and Misc Stuffs as I felt that more described what was coming from my heart. It is time again to reboot. Compassion is and will always be my ministry. I believe in Compassion International and it's mission. Much of my focus and volunteer work is with them. However God has now called me to include another ministry. That is Remember the Children and their work in Romania. I have been to Romania now three times. We sponsor several children in Satu Mare through RtC. I feel that God is both growing me and calling me to more.

     As a teenager I wanted to be a minister, I wanted to preach. We are all called to be ministers in our field by God and this blog serves as my pulpit. I minister in many ways and as I grow this blog I hope to share more of my miscellaneous thoughts throughout the future. As my focus is growing I have change my twitter handle from Luvs_Honduras to Luvs_Compassion. I think that too describes me better. So read along and follow along. I believe that God has called me to a relational ministry and I hope to expound on that. Blessings <><

Sunday, February 1, 2015

Remembering Romania ~ Part 1: David and Geta Olcean

This is the first of several posts remembering our time in Romania (Impact Romania 2014) and my reflections. 

    On my first trip to Romania in 2013 one of my favorite memories was that of a church we visited around mid-week. It had been a very long day of visiting several churches and I remember we were tired and hungry. We were already running about two hours behind schedule when we pulled up to a church in Ciumeghiu. We got off of our van and walked into an amazing environment. As we entered around 200 kids started clapping and cheering us in. Talk about energizing! Any thoughts of how tired we were or hungry were gone. We were totally loved on. All I remember is the thought that these kids had been sitting here for over 2 hours waiting for us to show up and they were still energized to see us. Wow! 

     Fast forward to this year. In one of those God moments (as I mentioned in the prior post) we would not be handing out Boxes of Hope but one of our focuses would be partnering with this same church in a community outreach. This church is led by an amazing pastor named David Olcean. Three years ago this was basically a "dead" church in a gypsy village. The local Orthodox church shunned those that would dare to visit there. David started a discipleship group during the week in the community and encouraged people to attend the church on Sunday. Each week he would check back and ask if they had gone. It was then that he found out that often on Sundays the church was not even open. Called by God he started ministering there and the church has grown. He is now working there full time with the help of Remember the Children. One of the things that I found amazing was that several years ago when the children came there were only a few. Then there were 30 and then there were 100. In 2013 it was close to 200 hundred!!! I am not doing the story the justice it deserves but David with his wife Geta are pouring their heart into this community to make a difference. It is amazing. 

      It was David's idea to host a community concert as an outreach event. Their choir produced a CD. As part of the outreach our team walked the streets of Ciumeghiu knocking on doors, handing out the CD and inviting them to attend the concert. In jest I mentioned I now know how Jehovah's Witnesses must feel when they walk neighborhoods. We were ignored, had doors slammed on us but some took the time to listen and thank us Americans. I will mention that it was pouring rain that day but we went out with hope in our hearts. At 3 o'clock the event started and our role would be to hand out tea and cakes to those that came. Well wouldn't you know it- God showed up BIG TIME!. The sun did not come out but it stopped raining for those two hours. People showed up (more than David even dreamed I think) and listened to a concert and a message. The outreach was more than a success. 

    Both David and Geta have a heart for the Lord and the community. It is a dark community that the light is being brought into. As I write this they have purchased the home across from the church and are rebuilding it. They are not just ministering to the community but are now going to be a part of it. One of the amazing things is that our church is going to help partner with them. They have dreams of rebuilding a summer camp for the gypsy children and we are in prayer for that. Our Christmas offering is being devoted to this community through Remember the Children. I encourage you to keep David and Geta's ministry in prayer. Pray for their safety, the growth of the church and that God will be present in that community.