Tuesday, September 10, 2013

A few very special events from this summer 2013

  We were blessed to have been a part of and celebrate with our girls and boys on a few very special days this summer.  The girls and boys graduated from the Transition Programs, Ioana and Alex got married and Elena was baptized!

  Although this year was tiring in many ways, when we came upon the day of graduation, July 7, 2013, we were so glad to see the sense of pride on their faces as they too had endured difficult situations and succeeded.  Josh and I experienced several strange emotions during this time; joyfulness to see how much they have grown, from where they came to where they are now, excitement for them to go live life on their own, apprehension in hoping they make the correct decisions and this strange feeling of being empty-nesters.
  God was right in the center of it all.  He tried each of us and stretched us and has made us all stronger.  Despite how we felt and our apprehensions, we know that God is in control and did not need us to do His will, but that He chose us to be His hands and feet!  We grew very close together, our girls and us, and have made a lasting impression on each other.  This year is one that we all will not forget!
Domnul Costel, Romanian president of H2H, praying over the graduates
Josh talking about our year with the girls
Us with all of the graduates
Us with our lovely girls

  Ioana and Alex got married on August 17, 2013!  It was exciting to help prepare the team house for a wedding this summer.  Everything came together quickly with the many hands that helped out.  It was simple but beautiful!  It was an experience we will never forget!

  On the morning of their civil ceremony, we all arrived and gathered inside as Alex and Ioana approached the desk where they are read their marriage rights by the official, when they were asked for their I.D. cards...  Ioana had left hers at the salon where she had gotten her hair and make-up done.  She became a bit frustrated as Josh and I laughed and reassured her that it will be alright and that one day they will look back and laugh about it.  Jen raced back to the salon for Ioana's I.D. and after a bit of waiting, the ceremony proceeded.

L to R: Ioana's mom, Ioana, Alina, oldest sister Nicoleta, Stefi, Alex & Marin
At the civil ceremony
Alex & Ioana on their big day!
Josh & I at their wedding
Their first dance as a married couple
Taking pictures around town
   Elena was baptized on August 30, 2013.  It was exciting that while she in still in the GTH program she had told us on a few different occasions that she had wanted to take this step in her relationship with God.  It was awesome to see it happen!

She chose a Psalm to read
She is afraid of water, but did so well
A new soul in Christ!
A beautiful cross necklace to remind her of her special day
With flowers from some very special people in her life

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