The Link – April 2020

A RAINBOW IS A SIGN THAT HE IS WITH US…
Multi-colored rainbow arches atop the words “Totul sa fie bine” (everything will be okay), adorn the households of many in Romania as part of a national children’s campaign to encourage their neighbors and communities in this time of international COVID quarantine and isolation.  It is no different at the two Deborah Houses in Giarmata, Romania, the 2 residential homes run by MLI that care for 20 young girls and teenagers that have been rescued from lives of trauma and abuse.
However, these “Deborah House girls”, their house parents and staff have taken the call to encourage others in their community even further. They heard that the Romanian doctors and nurses were trying to give each COVID patient in their care a letter of encouragement to help address the fear and isolation the patients were feeling. The girls at Deborah wanted to help. Gathering paper and supplies, the girls have made over 300 cards to be given to patients that are suffering with COVID in the area hospitals. The Deborah House girls hope that this will help the medical teams have more time for their treatment responsibilities and will also be a practical way the girls can bring hope and peace to someone else who is hurting.
May the hope and compassion demonstrated by the girls at Deborah, encourage us all in this challenging time of COVID, to look outward to see how we can also bring that good word that all will indeed be well, because of the great hope and confidence we experience in the Gospel.


ONCE RESCUED, NOW RESCUING OTHERS…
Another one of our own, Mirela, continues to amaze us as she recently left with a team of doctors to go to the largest border crossing with Hungary to sort thousands of Romanians who return to the country from Europe who have potentially been exposed to COVID-19.
Mirela was forced to start working at 11 years-old to pay for her parents’ alcohol and cigarettes and after all the violence that marked her childhood, Mirela spent four years at Deborah House, and six in the Aspirations program, where in her own words she “found love, peace, joy and slowly understood what a real family is.” In all MLI ministries, a simple principle is taught: “God blesses you so that you can be a blessing to others”. Praise God for all of you, who blessed Mirela so that she can bless others now through her work as a doctor, and more importantly through her commitment to love the Lord and His people as a daughter of God.


ENDS OF EARTH CYCLING…
Last year, thanks to the work of Mike McKeithen and Heather Wood, Fundația Missio Link International, was selected as the beneficiary of the Key West Bike Ride, an annual 300 miles cycling event organized by Ends of the Earth Cycling /New International, FL from Fort Myers to Key West.In January a team from EC, led by Christal Hanner visited us in Romania to learn first hand about our ministry and to develop presentation materials about MLI and Romania. Joshua Dyer did an amazing work in preparing video materials which we can use even beyond the purpose of the KWBR event. Thank you!Between March 21-26, I was preparing to take part in the KWBR, for youth we serve in Romania through the specific programs at MLI: Deborah House, Aspirations, Harmony, Back to School and Alpinis. Due to the COVID travel restrictions my trip was cancelled and eventually the KWBR was postponed. While the fun part was postponed, prayers and donations were not, and neither is God’s work.
#PrayPedalRepeat The KWBR experience being focused on prayer, we provided five stories and devotionals about our programs, one for each day of the ride. The entire community of staff, participants and many of our friends, took time to pray and also raised over $56,000, so much more than we could have expected. Such generosity is a powerful witness to God’s work.
The KWBR is only the tip of a huge team effort on the side of Ends Cycling. The team prepared with high professionalism and with hearts overflowing with love for the children and youth we serve in Romania; EC and you all touched us with the love of God! Thank you! Dear Ends Cycling friends, I look forward to riding with you when possible!
Emil Toader


ALPINIS UPDATE…
Due to the initial investment of Bill & Bonnie Kinschner, the generous stewardship of their heirs, and the provision of a handful of especially gracious MLI contributors in the fourth quarter of 2019, we are delighted to announce that the Alpinis Expansion Project is now fully “in the dry”! We thank the Lord for the provision that has got us this far, and we request your prayers for God’s continued guidance as we navigate the uncharted waters of COVID19 fund-raising realities.


A SPECIAL WELCOME TO NEW KNOXVILLE TEAM MEMBERS

A Message from our President, Kenny Woodhull.

“Since transitioning all daily operations from Atlanta to Knoxville last fall, we are pleased to have Kristi Simpson and Abby Wheeler join the Missio International team. Kristi is a retired educator and is focusing on book-keeping and donor care. Abby has a degree in Intercultural Studies and serves us in the role of a Ministry Coordinator. Each of them bring critical skills and energy to our organization as well as a heart-felt passion to serve Jesus and equip God’s people in Romania. Welcome aboard, Kristi and Abby!”


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