Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Christmas Trees

One of our Christmas traditions that is shared at Children's Home in Rwanda is the Christmas Tree. It is one way the children celebrate a tradition from Arlene's home. This year Arlene had an inspiration when moving the art room to the former sewing center. In the process she spied many beads that have been donated. What a celebration it was to have the youngest ones make ornaments and the older kids help them decorate the trees, one for the boys dorm and one for the girls.

But the real meaning of Christmas was at worship on Christmas Day. Arlene shared:

"For Christmas this year I suggested they each become an animal. Talking animals as the actors, cows, camels, donkeys, birds. The secondary kids took charge and they sure used their imaginations. At worship they started the pageant with the song Tell Me The Story of Jesus. After each of the animals told of being there for Jesus' birth they added a song, Away in the Manger, On Christmas Day, We Wish You a Merry Christmas and Joy to the World. The oldest kids learned and sang beautifully, Angels We Have Heard on High."

I can imagine how special Christmas is at Urukundo. All 52 children as one family celebrating the birth of our Savior Jesus, our Emmanuel.

Friday, December 19, 2014

Peace Birds

Do you ever wonder how people are touched by the sale of one object? When it comes to Rwanda peace birds.....many!! What starts as a simple piece of wood becomes a work of art. Peter learned that from his father and now carves them to support his young family. It is a family tradition.

As we sell the birds in the US the goodness continues to spread as the money raised will also support our education fund to send high school graduates to university or technical school. We have 6 planning on continuing their education Sept 2015 or Jan 2016. They took their National Exams in October and find out the results in March. Passing with high scores means they will secure a place at a good university. It is extremely competitive. But before starting school they must work for 3-6 months in the military or on a civil service project for their country.

Others touched are the students at Penn State that sold the birds as a service project. They plan to connect with one of the students that the funds will support and continue with an ongoing relationship.

Thanks to everyone that purchased birds for their Christmas tree or as a reminder of the ministry in Rwanda. So many stepped up and helped us raise $702.00 for the education fund. Outstanding!!!!

*Peter, the carver
*Lucie, planning on university in the ministry
*Alexander, university for computer science
*Sara and Riley, of Kappa Phi, selling the Peace Birds