From Maria's Desk

Leeds, England registered UK Charity No.1087961
Kingsport, USA charitable non-profit # 86-0957704
Oradea, Romania registered Charity No.14839712

...making smiles in Romania

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A Letter from Maria's Desk
December 2016

2016Ö.. my REFLECTION.

"Jesus is the reason for the season"Ö..we hear this a lot these days especially in the Christian world BUT do we really mean that? Is Jesus the real reason for the season?!

I had to do some shopping this past week for the mission centre and the shops were absolutely packed. I tried to walk around fast but could not do itÖÖso I started to ask myself a few questions like:

Why are people not kind thinking all year round?
Why do we not see so many people in churches these days?
Why so many Christian people forget that indeed the real reason is Jesus and not the tree, Santa Clause, gifts and so many other attractions.

I pray that we will stop and we will all really think hard the Ďreal reasoní.

I pray that we all will have a blessed Christmas time with family and dear ones and that Jesus will be at the centre of the celebration.

I pray for and Iím thankful for, each person that this past year helped us ÖÖ.with their time, their money and their prayers! You are not "sponsors" for the work we do here, you are more than that, you are missionaries, you are our colleagues. We are a team. Without every member of the team, we canít achieve as good all the things we do here in Romania.

I pray for each project that we have in the Smiles Foundation that the people involved will realise that all the things we do, we do because of the love that we received from Jesus.

I canít believe that we are nearing the end of another year! Where has 2016 gone I do not know, but I know who has everything under control and that gives me peace in this troubled world.

2016 for me was special in many ways!

I received the greatest gift from God, my baby Stefan. He is the answer to a lot of prayers and a real blessing for us.

Iíve managed to see JFL PART 2 finished! A dream that many times I was wondering if it would ever become a reality.

Iíve managed to see the RAPA project finished! Itís a great blessing to be a part of something soooooooo big! Many times I said that God can do His work without us but what a great honour it is when he chooses us to be a part of it. Iím so happy that Iíve been a part of the Rapa project this past year. Iím happy that the families there will not freeze this winter. Iím happy that babies will not die this winter because of the very cold weather. And Iím happy that YOU were part of the team that MADE ALL THIS POSSIBLE!

Iíve also managed to see "my heart project" Tileagd moving forward. For the last few years youíve heard me telling you about my struggles with the budgets in Tileagd. In many ways it is still the same situation, but I see each month miracles happen that are enabling us to be moving on! We are still here, even if at times itís easier "to turn away". Our work is not done yet, even if we are 15 years into it. Now we have the possibility of the Tileagd Project diversifying and getting even bigger. What an amazing God!

Iíve managed to see the Emergency Housing Unit finished. Yes a smaller project, but a much needed facility within Smiles.

AND each month Iíve managed to see all the salaries paid on time, all the bills covered. I DO NOT KNOW HOW? But I see it happening. God is indeed WOW!

When you have to cover £60,000 ($78,000) for the operational side of the work each month and you know that no month has it guaranteed from committed support, it can get scary. I am always amazed of the faith that Mr Hoy has. I do not know how he does it, but he is strong. I see him as a real example of "giving more to God than keeping for yourself". I remember when he told me many years ago that one day he will learn to live on 10 % and give 90% to God. Well, I think there are times that he already does that. So Iím really thankful to God for people like him.

Iím happy for the new people that came in Smiles this year and Iím thankful for those that worked with us but had to move on. Yes, many people, especially our staff, are an important part of the work, maybe the most important as many say and Iím happy that I have the colleagues that I have. They are not perfect, but none of us are, but all are trying their best to add something special, even unique, to the Smiles team.

Iím happy to see this year more than other years that our beneficiaries, the people that we serve, understand more why we do what we do! When they give their life to God, "our most important job" letís say like that - is complete!!

So 2016 was a good year. IíM THANKFUL TO GOD FOR IT!

I pray that 2017 might be even better and I pray for Godís protection over us day by day. We live in a crazy world. So many things are happening that make us wander more and more "when are you coming back God?" SO, let us get ready for that day! Let us stay closer to HIM and let us adore HimÖ..not only at Christmas but all year round.

Thank you my dear friend for everything you do for us and May God bless you in everything you do.

Thank you for being a blessing and for changing the world for a few people here in Romania

Thank you and I wish you a blessed Christmas.


Maria Hava ,
Director of Operations, Romania

Previous letters from Maria:
November 2016 - When God answers our prayers

October 2016 - Waiting
September 2016 - Miracles of Life

August 2016 - When our plans change
July 2016 - When something ends, something new begins

June 2016 - Moving Forward
May 2016 - His Plans or Ours?
April 2016 - Good, Good Father
March 2016 - Rainy Days
February 2016 - Frozen
January 2016 - A thankful heart

December 2015 - Make someone happy!
November 2015 - Like father like son
October 2015 - It's between you and God
September 2015 - Our Unchanging God
August 2015 - I trust Him no matter what
July 2015 - I've had enough
June 2015 - Things that make me happy

May 2015 - Butterflies
March 2015 - Sovereign over us

February 2015 - My Grace is sufficient for you
January 2015 - From the Management Team



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