Orphan to Orphan

Dear Kidstown Friends,

Meet Vasile. He is one of our orphanage directors in Romania. Not only is he a committed Christian and father-figure to over a dozen orphans, he also has a unique story which I think you’ll like to hear.

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You see, a long time ago Vasile and his three siblings lived a normal childhood. One day, however, their mom died due to cancel. Not long after their dad fell into a well and likewise perished, leaving four orphans behind.

Two of the kids went to live with relatives. Vasile and his older brother each went to live with a local pastor. Sounds OK, right? It would have been except that Vasile’s pastor treated him as a servant instead of a son, even relegating him to live in a barn for the next four years!

At the end of this time, both Vasile and his brother were moved to a large
government orphanage to live. Vasile was 10 at this time. This orphanage housed 1,200 children, and although vastly inferior to the life he once knew with his mom and dad, was ironically superior to living in a barn.

The next four years were spent there at the orphanage. Having been given the gift of the Gospel before the death of their parents, Vasile and his brother endeavored to keep the flames of faith alive. They would sneak out of the orphanage each Sunday morning, escaping to the nearby church so they could worship. On their way back “home” after the service, they would stop by the roadside and say a prayer in anticipation of what awaited them when they returned.

Monday mornings at the orphanage often resulted in Vasile and his brother being singled out, ridiculed for their faith (remember that this was during the time of Communism in Romania), and finally being beaten by both orphans and orphanage staff. The hardest part of all, however, was that never a smile, never an encouraging word, were ever cast Vasile’s way by the staff.

But they endured. And held to their faith. Vasile grew up, moved on with life, and started a family of his own. Then, in 1995, God brought an opportunity his way to which he could not say no: an orphanage of his own.

Things were coming full circle. God was giving Vasile a chance to pour into another generation of kids who, like him once upon a time, were suffering much. And so he embraced the opportunity. But instead of housing these kids in a barn, he gives them a clean, safe, and happy place to live. Instead of ridiculing them, he instead points them to Jesus and encourages them to follow Him. Instead of scowling at them, he draws them close, assuring them of his love for them.

Full circle. The pain and suffering Vasile experienced God used for good, and continues to.

When you think about our orphanages, think about the kids. But think also about those behind the kids. It’s these extremely high quality people, like Vasile, that we have the honor of working alongside with! As you think of them, why not whisper a prayer on their behalf? That God would strengthen them, help them, sustain them, and enable them to carry on the important work He has given them to do. Many thanks!