Three years ago,
Ruth Riggs, (Girl Guide and Rangers leader)and I
had just talked about the possibility of taking her Guides and
Rangers, from Stoke-on-Trent, out to Hungary to the poor villages, to
see, and experience poverty, at grass-roots levels. It was suggested
that maybe the girls could interact with the children, and do some
activity with them. Music and dance, games and sport is always the
best introduction to our children in underprivileged villages in
Hungary and Romania.
August 10th this year was the planned date.
The girls were excited and apprehensive at the same time. Ruth's husband Liam, drove one of the 3 cars that we hired, to take us from Budapest, up to the Romanian Borders.
Dani and Kati Beri, the Pastors of the local village Church, received them with open arms and a very warm welcome. Hungarian hospitality is first class, and the girls enjoyed eating true Hungarian Goulash on their arrival.
On the way up, I took the girls to Bag, to see Ishtvan and David, and the poor people in the little village under the mountain. There we did a little programme of singing and dancing, and head, shoulders, knees, and toes, went down great. Of course we prayed together, and their personal issues were bought before The Lord, and we prayed for those who were sick. They had wonderful Testimonies to tell me, especially of the miraculous healings. Bandi, a man of around 48, had been healed of traumatic asthma, and the people had not got jobs, working in the fields. Very hard laborious work, but work means money, and money means food. They were all very grateful. We praised our God, and gave much thanks to Him who saved us. The girls were a bit miffed I think, but they were witness to what God has done. We bought food with us, to distribute to the poor families, and we ate together, in love and true Christian fellowship.
The next stop was in Hadjunnanas, to meet my friend Balasz, who works with special needs children. They were camping in a park area, and we were asked to join them. There were children in wheel chairs, and some of the bigger children had autism, and all them from very poor homes. There were a lot of Roma children. The parents were not allowed in, and waited all day outside on the grass. No Roma allowed. Once again the girls did their, head shoulders, knees and toes. I did a sketch about 3 men with disabilities, who were not disabled in Gods eyes.
We ate together, potatoes, and parika, and onion, it was delicious(fenom).....washed down with peach juice.
Pastor Dani and
Kati Beri work so hard in improving the community.
Their activities in showing care and kindness has built them a
reputation that has reached the ears of the Government, and Church
hierarchy. They work for better living conditions for the poor
village people, and orphaned children. Community cohesion, is
essential, in building a new Community of peace loving, caring
people. Of course their teachings, of Jesus, and social skills as
Christians, give them a good guide line.
The integrity and honesty, and love that Pastor Dani and Kati show to all who meet them, is beyond the boundaries of human logic or reason. This is when you know God is in it.
I knew the Girl-Guides were in one of the most safest of places, but still the culture can shock the most grass roots of people.
The team bought all the food, and helped prepare and cook it. The big pot of food, fed all of us 10 plus 3, 50 children, and enough left over to send two smaller pans to 2 of the neighbouring villages. We do Thank them so much for all their time and efforts.
Ruth, Liam and the girls, took a whole day out to go into town and buy paint, so they could paint a beautiful mural in the Church/Community house. The results were wonderful.
Painting the green
railings around the perimeter of the property
was time consuming, and labour intensive. It was 40+ in the heat, and
with out complaint they suffered the weather, and got the job done.
Dani and Kati were
so happy and grateful, they cooked a wonderful
Hungarian cabbage dish, which delighted everyone.
The Group had only 4 days in the villas, but so much was achieved. They left £60 for food, and electric, and went the next day to Paradise Island to recuperate. There is a lovely outside pool, where everyone cooled off nicely.
Thank-you to Ruth, and husband Liam, for arranging, and organising everything, and a BIG THANK YOU to the Girls.
Their experience was unique, and can never be repeated, they shall never forget it, and I hope it adds richly to their knowledge of life, and the value of every persons soul, regardless of race,riches, colour or creed.
The weather was extremely hot, and the air was void of oxygen, or so it seemed. We continued up to Nyirbeltek, where we arrived around about 8.30pm..
The Girls had their first experience of another world, and another culture, and of a people who love with passion, regardless of their financial status, and living conditions.
God gives us compassion, as a a gift, let us always be sure to get it out of our pockets.
Give and it shall be given unto you.