Monday, March 15, 2010

Let's Celebrate - Ladies Day #1 - Szatmarcserke

"We're acting like the children." "This is fun" "I don't have to cook? or do the dishes?" These were just a few of the phrases we heard today in the little Roma (Gypsy) Baptist Church in the village of Szatmarcserke. The ladies didn't quite know what to expect as they entered the small room where the church meets and were cheerfully greeted by the American group representing the Women's Missionar Union of Virginia. The day began with a praise time led by some of the local Roma women. After a time of introductions and getting-to-know-you fun, Becky McKinney, past president of the WMU VA spoke. Her message was on celebrating life and that we as women are uniquely made by God. The necklace making that followed was fun and we remarked that our beauty comes from the inside - having hearts that love the Lord - but it is nice to have something beautiful to wear too! The Roma ladies proudly showed off their handiwork. Becky's second message was again on God loving us as women. She shared from her own experience and reminded the ladies God gave his son for us. As she talked about her own sons and stated she couldn't imagine giving her son for someone else's life, several of the women nodded and some had tears flowing. She also reminded them that God forgives and loves us no matter what. Then came the highlight of the day - learning to decorate cakes. We explained this was something the ladies could do for their own celebrations within their families and church. As the afternoon progressed giggles broke out, good natured teasing about one's decorating skills could we heard, as well as lots of talking, and you could see the women relax. They were having a great time! After the group picture they gathered up their cakes and supplies, greeted each other with "God Bless You" and headed out to show off their handiwork with smiles and singing.

The goal of the day was to offer encouragement to a group of women for whom life is hard and to allow them a time of fellowship and fun. Hearing the sound of the laughter as they made their way down the street back to their families and responsibilities, we knew God had blessed us all and the day was a success.

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