social spark Aisling Beatha: Romania


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Tuesday, June 07, 2011


Yesterday I mentioned that I will be making a mission trip to Romania in September and I promised more details.  Well, here you go . . .

Our church has contacts with a Christian ministry called Talmid in rural Romania.  The following is taken directly from their website.

The communist ideology and dictatorial regimes after the Second World War left their mark on the Eastern part of Europe. Especially Romania changed in less than forty years from a prosperous country into a nation where hunger, sickness and fear dominate. Talmid Ministries was founded to reach out to the material needs of a destitute population, but even more important to bring the Good News of Jesus where it was almost shut out for decades.
The inspirers and co-founders of Talmid Ministries are Dirk and Nicole Weyts. Dirk graduated as an officer of the land-forces. Nicole is a junior-high school language teacher. In 1996, they started organising relief transports to the ravaged Romania. In the year 2000 they moved with their three daughters Shari, Jana and Amy to the heart of Transylvania and live there amongst the local population in the mountain village Romoşel.
Talmid Ministries distributes clothes, food, school supplies and medication to the poorest families. By means of the sponsoring program, widows, families and students are helped financially. The school project provides the bus ticket or the school costs for approx. Hundred students, when their family is too poor to pay for that.
Besides the practical aid, much attention is given to spreading the Good News of Jesus Christ. Seminars, teachings, youth meetings, women's gatherings are provided to the local churches, regardless their denomination.
Talmid Ministries founded the Christian Center Speranţa (hope) in the gipsy area of Romos. Children are helped with their school work, childrens' afternoons are organized and different courses take place such as English, computer, sewing, creative work, etc.
The house of the family Weyts in Romoşel is a refuge and a place of 'shalom' for young people, who stay there for a shorter or longer time, to live together with a Christian family, help in the ministry and get immersed into the reality of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit.
The objectives of Talmid Ministries can be summarized as follows:

  1. Practical help to needing people, especially gypsies
  2. Providing spiritual help to the local churches
  3. Spreading the Good News of Jesus Christ and disciple believers, by immersing them into the Reality of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit

The motivation for this work we find in the gospel of Matthew:
“Therefore, go and make people from all nations into my disciples, immersing them into the Reality of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to obey everything that I have commanded you.”
(Matt. 28:19, Complete Jewish Bible)
You can see I have highlighted the one word up there.  Sewing!  Nicole has asked me to visit and teach the ladies some projects that they can then sell at the local markets.  This is a very exciting adventure for me.  Right back at the beginning of this year God spoke to me about this year being a year of New Things and I had a gut level feeling that one of those things would be teaching, so when Nicole made a comment on my facebook that maybe I could do this I jumped at the chance.

I found a photo of the Sewing class on their website:

So, you can see, they already have some sewing skills, this trip is not about teaching them to sew, but about teaching them to take what they know and make it into saleable projects.  I'm going to take with me a file of projects, far more than we can get through in the 2 1/2 weeks I will be there, that I can leave with them, with clearly set out instructions.  I will lay the pages out with English instructions on one half of the page and leave plenty of space for them to translate into Romanian.  The point about teaching them saleable projects is that it enables them to support themselves and fight their own way out of poverty.

Two of us are making this trip, myself and another lady from my church, who has visited this ministry before.  We have to raise the funds to make the trip.  Travel costs are probably going to come to around £340 for the two of us.  Ideally we want to raise all that and more.  So I have asked all my facebook friends to donate towards the trip.  If everyone I know on facebook donated just £3.50 we would cover those expenses and more!

I have also set up an Etsy shop where I am selling products that I have made, with all profits going towards the trip.  Once we have covered the expenses involved in getting there, any more that we raise will go towards buying craft supplies for the women, as they are incredibly difficult to get hold of where they are.  The name of my Etsy Shop is Aisling Beatha, which is Gaelic for a Vision of Life.  It is properly pronounced Ashling Bey-ha but to be honest I never seem to remember that.

I promise to take lots of photos while I am there and write all about it here on my blog when I return.

If anyone is interested in donating towards this trip, please get in touch.

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