What a day of Christ’s unfailing love at MCV! The faces of our children say it all, but one of our visitors, Myrinda wrote the following account of the day!
Michael’s Children’s Village had a wonderful Christmas here in Africa! Late at night on Christmas Eve, the visitors went to all the houses to decorate the tables so that the children would wake up to fun decorations—there were crackers (little Christmas gifts that pop or “crack” open when you twist them) as well as a balloon at each place setting. We also put colorful napkins in each glass and a shiny garland down the middle of each table.
On Christmas morning, the children awoke to a decorated table and a nice breakfast of eggs, toast, bacon, and juice prepared by their parents—what a treat! When they came over to the visitor house later in the morning, they were all happily playing with their own personal balloon . Teisa, Jean, Grace (the wonderful cook from the Pastors’ Christmas lunch) and her daughter, and all of the visitors enjoyed a nice Christmas breakfast as well.
About an hour later, we gathered a bunch of chairs under a big shade tree to commence the opening of gifts (God gave us a warm, sunny, and breezy Christmas morning Pastor Surprise and Teisa spoke to the children about the true meaning of Christmas; how every good and perfect gift comes from our Father in heaven who gave us Jesus! After it was clear where the gifts came from, they called up the first household to receive their gifts. After all the children were given their packages, everyone laid hands on the family to pray for them, and then they began excitedly opening their gifts. Some had never experienced a Christmas celebration before, so they were a bit bewildered about all the excitement; however, after they understood that these toys and clothes were for them, they began to happily play. The children that came to MCV last year were a bit more animated about their gifts because they understood what was happening After each family was called forward, they all returned to their houses to enjoy their new toys until our afternoon Christmas braai began.
Late in the afternoon, we began preparing food for the meal—hamburgers and hotdogs went on the grill (these foods are a real treat for the children—not often served here!) and pap (boiled maize meal) and gravy were cooked up. The kids continued playing all the while. We handed out a plate of food with a Coke to everyone; it was interesting to see how the kids ate their burgers—some ate the hamburger and bun separately, dipping everything in the ketchup, and some put their hamburger and ketchup on their bun. No matter how they did it, they all enjoyed the meal! Halfway through, it began to rain on us, but the kids just took cover wherever they could find it and kept happily eating .
We want to thank all of those who made all the Christmas gifts possible—Oasis Christian Church, Windsor CT; All Nations Fellowship in New Orleans, USA; Westside Community Church in Toronto, Canada; and Mercy Happens in Netherlands. What a blessing you all have been to our family here in South Africa!