March 4-7: The Unusual Trip.

We returned from our last trip little more than 24 hours ago and, as both of us expected (Emanuele and I), this journey was quite an experience.
Upon arrival at IASI airport at 2:00am on Friday night, we noticed an extraordinary crowd in the waiting room: mainly Ukrainian women and children hoping to catch a flight headed to a western European capital.

On Saturday afternoon we travelled toward the Albita border (Romania-Moldavia) to evaluate the situation and eventually aid the refugees crossing the border. We soon realized that the organizations based onsite (NGOs and orthodox/evangelical churches) were perfectly coordinated and prepared to assist the refugees in transit from the Romanian-Moldavian customs.

Though what we then witnessed was rather surreal: women driving cars packed with children, elderly people, personal belongings… we approached a few of them (speaking in English) and learned that they were trying to join relatives or friends living in the west, countries like Germany, Poland, Hungary, Italy.
We noticed their exhaustion for the long journey and for this incredibly tragic situation. As previously mentioned, we had managed to provide accommodations to groups of refugees at our farm or at the neighbouring evangelical churches. But while watching these families, particularly these women determined to protect their children, we couldn’t help wondering what will happen next. Will they manage to start from scratch? How can they possibly explain to their children the reasons that caused leaving their home, their school, their friends? How to tell these kids that they are escaping from death when they look-up at us with sincere and grateful smiles?
We had to push back our tears and silently pray the Father to shield them all, to help them build a new life wherever that will be. But the worst had yet to come. We met those even less fortunate, who travelled from distant villages hundreds of miles on foot or by improvised transport (mainly buses or trains) aiming at reaching salvation in any possible way.
We expect the next days and the following weeks to be crucial: we need to arrange hospitality and to be prepared to experience emotionally challenging situations. Several refugees have no contacts in western Europe and hope to move back to Ukraine anyway as soon as the war is over.

For this purpose, we are seriously considering increasing the reception capacity of the Chedes Agape Farm by adding accommodations able to host more families in long-term transit.
Trucks in Italy are currently being loaded with goods collected by hundreds of caring people who have responded to our call to action.

In these challenging times, we would like to thank everyone who has expressed interest and support, making generous donations that will allow us to continue our work.
Our goal is to provide a roof over every head, a bed and a warm meal to whoever should reach our area.
We are aware that this humanitarian crisis will last for a long time and even if the war were to end today, there would be consequences for years ahead.

But let’s not forget about all the work that we have been doing to improve the Romanian villages.
Let’s not despair. We can confide in our merciful God who will always provide us with strength and faith to continue our work and to continue to Love our neighbour.  

I know that the LORD will maintain the cause of the afflicted, And justice for the poor.

Psalm 140:12 May God bless us all.  


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