Greetings from a very hot Romania. The weather alert went to amber today and could progress to red by end of the week, as temperatures are set to reach 40C (104F). Amazingly, the hot weather is not deterring the energies of those on our Mission Team this week. We have a large team from Worthing (in the south of England) and a couple from Scotland who have visited many times before and quite familiar with the hot summers here.
Our Mission Team are certainly appreciating the swimming pool after their hard day in the field. Actually even now at gone 10pm I can hear them still enjoying the pool, but the temperature has now dropped to 27C (80F) which is rather pleasant!
The Teams that have been coming thick and fast this summer have really been a great blessing to us all. They are all working so hard and productively and we are seeing great achievements checked off our ‘TO DO’ list – which is very encouraging.
In addition to the regular favourites of Family Visits, Homeless, Children’s Outreach and Elderly Residential Centres – many teams are working on specific ‘Hands-On’ projects all around the county.
In Arpasel they will continue this week putting the roof on our new offices while another team are working out in Tileagd, now painting and freshening up the school ready for the new term in September. Another team are tiling and painting at the ECO centre while yet another have just cleaned beds and set them up in rooms at the Assisted Living facility. So much going on and yet so much more to do. It really is amazing.
July has also been a great month for wrapping up major issues we’ve been working on for a few months now.
The Smiles UK Tour in November is fully booked and we are very excited with all the venues we’ll be visiting. Starting November 10th in Belfast, Northern Ireland, the team will travel and make presentations every night until the last night in Bishop Stortford on November 19th. Then they will take one day to visit the beautiful University City of Cambridge before heading back to Romania early on November 21st.
I am delighted to announce that Maria will now be on the UK Tour, somewhat taking my place of leading the Tour and making sure everything runs smoothly. Being as she’ll have 12 month old Stefan with her, she’ll appreciate the help she will have along the way. Husband Cornel will be with them so that helps with Stefan. Dawn and Barbara are on the Tour, so driving, logistics and local knowledge will be covered. Luke will also be on his first Smiles Tour, but many of the Romanian Team will have travelled more in the UK than Luke – so I’m not sure who will be the most excited, as Luke will be visiting Northern Ireland and Scotland for the first time in his life! What a treat and adventure he has in store.
Fact is – the Tour will be a wonderful experience for everyone – especially those in the audience each night, so please make a note now in your diary of which presentations you’ll be going to see.
The full Itinerary is detailed on our Fundraising Events Calendar.
At the same time as the UK Tour was finalised, my American trip, also in November, was wrapped up and all my desired stops were confirmed. I really was so delighted that everyone could accommodate my visit as the schedule was proposed.
So all my anchor stops are secured but I have some spaces during those visits to add a meeting or two if you would like to get together or have me address your church or mission group about Romania.
If you are in or close to these cities and want to arrange a meeting, e-mail me directly (firstname.lastname@example.org) and we will see what can be arranged. In or around: Cincinnati OH, Columbus OH, Richmond VA, Tri-Cities TN, Charlotte NC, Baton Rouge LA, Houston TX, Phoenix AZ and Jacksonville FL.
After more than two years I am so looking forward to getting back to the States to see great friends, supporters and co-workers in building God’s Kingdom here on earth and particularly in Romania through Smiles. Please get in touch and let’s see what we can do in partnership together.
We all have a lot to do here before any of us start touring in November. We’ve a busy month of Mission Teams in August and then again in October – so always plenty to report on, which all the usual team have done again this month. Maria, Georgi, Adi, Barbara and Luke all have challenging, interesting and appreciative stories and thoughts to share. Be sure to check them all out as time permits. They are so important and interesting I strongly recommend you take time to read each report and please drop an e-mail to encourage each of them in their work for the Lord.
Maria – Holiday Mode ; Georgi – A New Beginning ; Adi – Passion for People
Barbara – Do not Miss an Opportunity ; Luke – A Hand Up not a Hand Out
Thankful Hearts – Children Outreach Programme (with video)
As Smiles continues to grow and add new projects, so our Budget grows and needs continuous support.
The Tileagd Assisted Living is now fully functional and we still have a sizeable debt to clear for Renovation costs plus operational costs for the first month of £2,700 ($3,500) which will steadily rise as residents are received up to an anticipated monthly budget of £5,500 ($7,150). Please help with a sponsorship commitment or a fund-raising event. Tileagd Assisted Living link.We have also increased our Outreach Programmes this summer for which we would value some additional support. The impact is clear for all to see as we reach into so many communities with the message of the Gospel. But we need support: Outreach Programme link.Finally on financial issues that I’ll mention this month, our JFL Disability Centre has been wonderfully supported from Fund-raising events through Mission teams this summer.
However, I am a little concerned that regular sponsorship support is not yet coming through sufficiently, which could mean the fantastic work with Disabled Groups started in April and so far maintained once or twice a month could stop when the Mission Teams stop their fund-raising.I really want to see our partnership with Disability Groups continue and for the JFL Centre to be fully functional – so please consider a sponsorship commitment personally, as a church or group so that we can continue to reach all these people with the Love of Christ. Disability Centre link.
I think I will leave it there for another month. There is always so much to share but I believe there is already enough for you to read, digest and pray about. We believe that is the most important support you can give and it makes an enormous difference to us all here in Romania to know so many are praying daily for the work we are privileged to do.
Please keep in touch with us and we hope to see you soon.
May God richly bless you.
Chief Executive to
The Smiles Foundation