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

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Adi Matis – Smiles Romania Assistant Director
March 2015

Home in Romania, but not only

Three years ago, back in 2012, when we were preparing for the Tour through United Kingdom, we were so excited to be able to meet with a lot of our supporters and to share with them some of the stories of our beneficiaries!

Remember, "stories from the heart"? This time, we were even more excited because as we have prepared not only more stories to share, but also many other surprises, among which is no doubt the Smiles Worship CD has got the spotlight. So, I’d like to tell you a little bit about how "HOME in Romania" became a reality!

I believe it was very early last year when Mr. Hoy talked to us about the possibility to have another tour in the United Kingdom, to present the work we do and to encourage people to support the work of Smiles. I was very happy to hear that, I knew it was going to be fun, but had no idea how much fun! And so, when the plans were starting to take a shape, we started to think what would be the special feature for this year…

Those of you who were visiting Smiles in 2014 and even the latter part of 2013, will know that we introduced something special for each Wednesday evening – a time of worship and testimony that will join together both the mission trip guests and the Romanian colleagues as we were all encouraged and motivated to continue working as a team for making real differences in people’s lives. It was a truly wonderful and inspiring time of fellowship that was greatly appreciated by everybody! So, I remember one of these evening, after doing the songs we had prepared, Mr. Hoy said, in his personal way, and I quote approximately: "Well, that wasn’t too bad, was it? Not bad for a bunch of social workers and project managers!... Who knows, we might record a CD, why not?"

Of course we all thought it was just a joke, and maybe it was at the time! But then, after a while, Mr. Hoy asked me if I thought it was possible to put together a collection of songs that will extend what we did every Wednesday evening and that was to bring the worship for God out of the Mission Centre and make it available for more people. Of course, I saw it as a great challenge, but at the same time, I was convinced it could happen. I have had the experience of creating some backing tracks for the high school kids for the previous tours "CEO and Friends" that you might know of and so it did not seem impossible to take the concept one step further!

With great enthusiasm, I started to select some music and we put together a list of beautiful songs that illustrate perfectly what Smiles Team can talk about ("I could sing of Your Love") can proclaim ("10,000 Reasons", "Oh How I love Jesus" or "The Lord’s my Shepherd") and explain ("Because He lives"). We ended up with eleven songs, both English and a couple of Romanian songs that have a fantastic message about God’s love and wonderful provision that He gives to us all, His children.

Then, in September, I started working on the musical tracks, recording and preparing the them for the upcoming album. It was a very exciting time for me, as I particularly enjoy playing and producing music. When we were ready, we started to practice with all the team and soon enough, we were ready to get down to serious business – recording the vocals and finishing the mixes.

Of course, in the meantime, we had some more mission trips, we carried on with our regular activities in the projects and we continued doing what we normally do. As you may realise, the beneficiaries of our projects cannot put on hold their problems and needs and for us they must stay the first priority, as this is what we do – help and encourage them to move on with their lives. We really are trying to help people understand there are things above the immediate needs, that while we are still giving and feeding them! God can change lives in such a way we can not even begin to understand and that must be the ultimate aim, to lead people to Christ! So, all made sense!

Early in January, after intense and serious rehearsals, we were ready to record the vocals in the studio; one of the best Romanian professionals in the business assisted us and to our great surprise, for few days we truly become "recording artists"! Here we became ‘real’ singers and with this occasion, we discovered it is not easy, to be a star! Many takes in the studio, many hours of focused work, to do and redo harmonies, solos, breaks, up, down, keeping the tempo, watching the pitch, the whole package! But was so exciting and challenging, we got to do something special, that we could only dream of before.

After another few weeks when all the songs were mixed and edited, we got the final material. We were so proud of it! We believe the album came out very nice and we are sure you will enjoy it too! The name of the album, as now may know, is "H.O.M.E in Romania". By this title, we wanted to express two things really: first – we are Romanians, we are from Romania and so Romania is our home, but second – Romania can become your home, if you embrace the challenge of taking a Hands On Mission Experience with The Smiles Foundation. No matter where we are from, we are all together as a family, as partners, having the same objective: to share Love, Hope and Faith to the people of Romania!

We wanted to keep this as a surprise until the Tour and it was probably the best kept secret in Smiles for the last 6 months! But now we are happy to tell everyone about it! Please get one of the CDs, while they last, and be sure that with it you’ll get not only some wonderful music for worship, but also the chance to understand Smiles better, the work and the purpose we have for the Romanian people!

Once you’ve heard it, do let me know if you enjoyed it. Then recommend your friends get a copy to spread the word and raise important funds for the Smiles work in Romania.

May God bless you richly!


Adi Matis
Project Manager
Assistant Director Smiles Romania



Previous reports from Adi:

February 2015 - New year, new hope and new plans

January 2015 - Management Team Reports

December 2014 - Preparing for the Celebration

November 2014 - A man's true story... an inspiration to us all

October 2014 - Golden September

September 2014 - A Summer of Experiences

August 2014 - Salard Community Reloaded

July 2014 - Sessions for the Mind

June 2014 - Unknown

May 2014 - Celebrate with us

April 2014 - Beliefs

March 2014 - From being taken care of to taking care...

February 2014 - My dream... to become a pig caretaker

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