Monday, July 2, 2012

Ethiopia 2012, TEAM 2, DAY3 ~Day at the Orphanage

Day 3~ written by Phil Chapman

After a wonderful breakfast (scrambled eggs) and singing Happy Birthday to Nels (36th), dove into God’s Word, and then we headed to a Catholic orphanage that had a ton of kids, including dozens that were very sick.

 There were children there that had severe sickness, children with missing limbs, malnourished, and premature.  The group was overwhelmed with the significant with the babies’ needs at this location, but at the same time amazed at the smiles from the children.

Beside the large amount of babies at this orphanage, there were dozens and dozens of children ready to play soccer, basketball, Frisbee, baseball catch, football, and just hanging out.  The kiddos were leading us around the facility, and so happy to show us there living quarters, including the beautiful church.  We provided a large amount of baby supplies, including pacifiers, toys, and Blessing Bags (bags filled with infant or toddler sized clothes, a toy, candy, coloring book, and some other goodies). 

As we were leaving the orphanage, I had the opportunity to talk with the Sister about everything that we were doing.  She gave me a blessing for our group, which was very humbling because this woman is joyfully serving her King.

We went back to the Guest House for lunch and several cold pops…we have been drinking a lot of Coca-Colas while we have been here.  

At 4:00 PM we headed back out to a government run orphanage.  We didn’t get to take any pictures, but we have many faces etched in our memory.  Lauren Putty and I held one little baby at this orphanage that the closest kid I have ever seen that appeared to be a Doll.  Her skin, eyes, and baldhead were perfectly shaped.  But then, aren’t all of these children.  Most of the time was spent holding the little babies, as there were three rooms full of them.  We spent about 20 minutes downstairs watching Ben 10 with all of the children ages 5-10.  Maybe Ben 10 is famous in America, but I have never seen it.  These kids knew exactly what was going to happen and were providing quotes before they were happening.  I wonder how many times they had watched that episode?  As I was sitting there, I thought I heard a kid behind me sing opera very softly.  I immediately imitated it out loud and he stood up and bellowed out some major opera.  We were dying laughing!  We said “chow” to the kiddos and headed out.

We went out to eat again this night.  We went with a purpose…to celebrate Nels’ 36th Birthday!

  Limetree was the restaurant of choice tonight.  It featured many choices for dinner, including spaghetti, cheeseburgers, grilled chicken sandwiches, French fries, onion rings, wheatgrass shots, and injura (the local sour bread that is used for many meals throughout the country). 

 There is always a slight twist with the food in a foreign country and Ethiopia isn’t an exception to this rule.  Instead of a cheeseburger, it was only a burger because they didn’t have cheese…oh, and the burger was really sausage (or donkey meat according to Matt Swartz).  The grilled chicken sandwiches were titled grilled chicken burger and the Chicken caramelized onion sandwich was really a chicken salad sandwich that Brett Anderson says didn’t taste much like chicken.  The onion rings tasted like funnel cakes.  However, the food and fellowship was truly fantastic.

We ended our eating extravaganza by having the three waiters there sing Nels Happy Birthday, American style, with an Ethiopian twist…kind of like the Chinese Restaurant scene at Christmas on The Christmas Story.  When I called them back after they had sung it one time, so that we could take their picture, they didn’t understand so they began to sing again.  We all laughed, then took pictures of the four of them (Nels and the waiters).  I tipped them each and they couldn’t be happier according to their grin that reached from one ear to the other.

We went back to the Guest House, had another Coke, and then debriefed about the day.  It was a long tiring day, but we felt like we touched some people this day and we knew that we were moved to tears ourselves.  However, we couldn’t imagine what was in store for us the next day. 

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