Thursday, November 24, 2011


For years I've been delayed in creating a website or blog for one simple reason.  The reason is that I know the audience will be very diverse.  Its really quite difficult to share information when the audience is so broad. 

Most of the posts will be directed towards the audience of people who support the work.  This includes people who are reading with the specific intention of deciding whether they want to start supporting the work.  It includes people who are interested in supporting specific projects from time to time.  Also included are people who provide financial support on a monthly basis to cover all the operating expenses.  Many of these people have been supporting the work through the Gospel Tabernacle for many years. 

The focus of the Haven of Hope Foundation includes supporting orphanages and churches in Romania.  This work was started by a Pastor at the Gospel Tabernacle church in Coudersport, PA.  The church provides the ministerial covering for the churches we support in Romania.  Further, the members of the church provide most of the financial support required to operate the orphanages in Romania.  Many of the readers of this blog will be aware of this church and may be members.

The Haven of Hope Foundation is an independant foundation, seperate and apart from the Gospel Tabernacle.  The foundation allows individuals and businesses that are not connected with the Gospel Tabernacle to get involved in supporting the work of the foundation.  This blog represents the views of the Haven of Hope Foundation only.

The audience for this blog may be rather diverse in their individual beliefs.  You will notice varying levels of "Christian-ese" in the posts, based on the subjects.  The Haven of Hope Foundation is unashamedly a Christian organization.  Our focus will be to reflect the values and do the work of Jesus Christ. 

I am well aware that the audience will include all sides of the foundation's work.  In addition to the supporters, those being supported will definitely be readers of the posts.  This includes the pastors we support, members of their churches and even the children growing up in the orphanages we support.  The posts will not be embellished or exagerated, but they don't really need to be.  The testimonies of the lives being saved and transformed are powerful enough. 

As you can now understand, it would be impossible to create each post to be relevant for every audience.  So please bear with me as you read the posts. 

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Ioana Testimony

Ioana is 7 years old and lives at the Deva orphanage.  Pastor Viorel asked a few of the orphans to testify at the dedication of the orphanage in Hunedoara.   

This little girl is the youngest of three gypsy sisters who came from the state orphanage shortly after they were taken into custody.  The girls were begging with their mother on the streets.  They woke up one morning after sleeping on the street all night to nudge their mom and find her dead.  Their father is an alcoholic and could not take care of them.  Beautiful young children are more successful beggars than older drunks, so he took them from city to city begging.

As young gypsy girls, these children had one career path.  As soon as they were of age, they would be prostitutes.  Most Romanians are unashamedly prejudice against the gypsies.  The few jobs that exists for young people in Romania are not open to the general gypsy population.  These girls will be raised in a loving Christian family.  They will be given an education.  They will have every opportunity to defy the odds. 

Hunedoara Orphanage Worship

The worship in Romania is excellent.  The room that we use for church service in Hunedoara was not big enough to hold all the people who came to the orphanage dedication.  The weather was great, so the service was held outside.  The video will give you a good look at the outside of the orphanage and a taste for the annointed worship music.

The singer is Pastor Viorel's daughter Alexandra.  Her brother Sebi is to her right, her husband Danny is to her left. 

Hunedoara Orphanage

On July 15th, 2011, this building became a home for children.  I remember coming to the land before the first scoop of dirt had been moved for the foundation. 

Pastor Viorel had the vision to plant a church and orphanage in Hunedoara for many years.  The city gave the property with the condition that the foundation build on the property with a few years. 

A team from the US arrived just with a container of materials just a few weeks before the property was due to revert back to the city. 

On the first trip, they were able to get the building built, but it was left unfinished for several more years.  The second trip came in 2009 when the team finished and refinished the interior.  The interior design had to change from the original plans because Romania had passed a law requiring the orphanage to have four rooms for the kitchen area, rather than one.  One room for cooking, one room for washing vegetables, one room for storing meat and a bathroom for the cook to use.  There are no laws about smoke detectors, but you must have all these rooms in your kitchen layout!  My favorite crazy rule is that you are not allowed to dry laundry in the same room you wash it.  And no, there is no good reason for that...

Here is an after photo of the same picture above.  Since 2009, the building has functioned as a church on Sundays.  The church body is Hunedoara is growing.  The opening of the orphanage creates another challenge.  The government of Romania does not allow you to hold church services in orphanages.  Sooner than later we will have to find another place to hold church in Hunedoara.


These are the first lives to be impacted by the new orphanage.  The family on the left was about to be destroyed by the child protection service.  There is no father in their lives.  They were homeless.  The child protection service was about to take the children and put them in seperate foster homes.  The mother would have remained homeless.  Instead, the children and their mom have been delivered from an impossible situation by the orphanage!  The family on the right lived in a home where they were abused regularly.  With no place to go, they had no choice but to take it.  This orphanage has given them an escape from the nightmare of regular beatings. 

Soon there will be more children ariving.  What a blessing it is to know that you are a part of saving lives.