It wasn’t until I lived in Russia in the early 90’s that I ever questioned whether I liked my name. Until then, “April” carried connotations of green, of budding flowers, of new life and promise. In Russia, the name took on a different meaning entirely.
Having moved to Russia in a brutal December, I was eager for a thaw. I wanted to be able to actually see out of the trolley bus windows to know when my stop was approaching, but thick frost prevented all visibility. I wanted to sit on park benches, not walk over them because they were completely buried in snow. I longed to go outside without heavy boots and bulky attire.
While March remained snowy, I couldn’t wait for spring. But my Russian friends thought I was crazy. “What’s not to like about the end of this dreariness?” I wondered…until spring came.
April in Russia was a sloshy mess. The melting of so much snow created muddy rivers on the sidewalks and puddles the size of the Atlantic. I had to mop the floor of my apartment multiple times a day because every time anyone entered they brought with them the grime of 1,000 cities. The sun still refused to peek out from behind thick clouds, and I felt my mood sinking underneath it all. I eventually realized that I still had a few months’ wait for blooms and buds.
This year, my perspective has changed once again.
We took a team of students from Taylor University to Vladimir, Russia for “Spring break” last month. They trounced through the snow to serve in orphanages, holding a VBS and loving on the children they met. They brought life and joy to the otherwise dreary monotony of institutional life.
And while we were there, we saw the fruition of a very long-held dream: the purchase of the Russian Christian Foster Home! Your generosity has provided a home where children can live and be loved, where they can experience the bond of family, where they will get to know a Heavenly Father who loves them.
This year, April WILL mean new life in Russia! It will be full of promise and hope, despite a little slush. I am so grateful, and I know some children will be, too.
Below are our praises and requests for the month of April:
- Celebrate with thanksgiving the purchase of the Russian Christian Foster Home! The Zaozerskys, the house parents for the home, are eager to have more children join their family now that they have the space to qualify to take them into their home.
- Thank God for using the team from Taylor University to express the love of Christ to orphans during their spring break trip. Thank Him, too, for the health and safety He granted the team.
- Give thanks for the continued construction at Comeback Ministries’ Home which affords the family the space needed. Thanks to a generous donor, the project is nearing completion!
- Continue to ask God for a good resolution for the 18 girls from Daya Vihar Girls’ Home in India who are being forced by the government to relocate to their homeland state, Jharkand. In addition to asking God for a safe place where these girls can live, we are praying the girls will be able to continue their education in a familiar language. Having lived in Tamil Nadu, they do not know the language of their home.
- Pray for the Zaozerskys, the house parents in the Russian Christian Foster Home, as they prepare to welcome another child into their family. Ask God to make the selection of the child clear to all who are involved in the process.
- Intercede on behalf of Boaz staff members in transition. David Mercier will be moving home from Russia the end of this month, and Megan Weinhandl will be leaving her position with this ministry as she feels lead to explore potential opportunities in Uganda.