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H.O.M.E.

After 25 hours of travel by crazy taxi, plane, & van, we are home sweet home! Check out the pictures…

 Thanks so much, EVERYBODY, for your comments of encouragement & all of your prayers. You made this adventure even more fun by keeping up to date with us and rooting us on along the way. Hats off to Vicky & Barry for bringing home another family member, & hats off to God for pushing all the paperwork through in only 7 short months! We’re so happy to have Levi as part of our family now and look forward to getting to know him more and more. For now, please keep praying for him as he adjusts to the USA suburban life, learns English, and gels with our crazy family. 

Also, keep House of Welcome in your prayers, & read the post before this one about how you can help them 🙂

Until next time,

The Witzers

After our 24 hours of travels, the whole family is Stateside! Before we wrap up this blog, we wanted to do one last post about New Life in India. They need our help- please read this post to see how you can help them!

The 35 kids & 6 staff members moved into House of Welcome last weekend. We received an email from Simion saying that they already know that they need more space and are hoping to build a bigger hall at the front of the room.

House of Welcome is only one part of New Life Movement. The ministry, which was founded by Simion and Puspita in 2007, also does church-planting and pasturing around the region.

Currently House of Welcome is run on a completely voluntary basis by:

T. Vanaja Rao, the teacher

Keshore Banik (the middle) & his wife Sushila Banik, the cooks; Ashish Kumor & Ghiu Jickhariya (on outside), who are also the church-planters of New Life

Simion, Puspita, & Sneha

Sneha

Please pray for these guys! They all live at the house, and they have the hearts and perseverance that it takes to care for 35 children. What they need most is encouragement, prayers for protection, and funds to keep doing what they do. Would you consider taking Simion’s email address and committing to pray through his updates and send notes of encouragement?

These are the faces of House of Welcome at the moment:

As Simion preaches around the region, he sometimes runs into children who ask to be taken back to his home because they have no family. Out of faith and grace, Simion usually takes the child with him back to House of Welcome, and that’s how many of the children come to be at the house. Not all of the children at HoW are orphaned, however. Some are at HoW because their biological parent or parents feel they are unable to care for them due to extreme poverty, illness, death, or lack of work, and have asked Simion to care for their child for them.

“And anyone who welcomes a little child like this on my behalf is welcoming me.” -Jesus

It’s important to know that Simion is very meticulous about the details of running a ministry and children’s home! He was eager to have us sign and date financial reports that he had already emailed to us, and he showed us the paperwork and medical reports for each child, also giving us copies to take home. He showed us the applications and background checks of the volunteers as well. All of this calmed any worries we might’ve had from only communicating online up until that point!

Vicky signing financial reports

We sat down with Simion and Puspita and went over the budget of caring for the children. We have estimated that it would take about $25 a month to sponsor one child at House of Welcome. This money would go directly to the child for his or her living expenses. During this Christmas season, would you consider giving the gift of sponsorship to a child at New Life?

If you feel led to take one of these children under your wing and nurture them through prayer and sponsorship, please contact Vicky at witzerland@msn.com or Amanda at afawn.witz@gmail.com We will be happy to match you with one of these beautiful children!

Thanks, and Merry Christmas!

Love,
Vicky, Amanda, & all at New Life

 

 

 

 

 

 

"We are his hands, we are his feet."

Cody in China

My darling youngest brother, Cody, has been especially charming and comedic on this trip. Making the Chinese Customs personnel smile was only the beginning- all of the hotel workers here love him, and he is the first member of our family that Levi warmed up to. If you’ve met Cody, you know that alongside that charming smile, there is a sneaky, energetic, and hilarious personality. Everyone who met him here commented on his energetic nature.

Cody has been a source of love and laughter for us on this trip. Among his hijinks:

 


Cody and Levi drawing together

He performed lots of "experiments" with water, mouthwash, mom's expensive shampoo, and toothpaste. He broke one of the hotel glasses in the process.

"Jesus is more powerful than that statue- it was just made by other people!"- upon being explained the purpose of this statue

 

Cody quote: “Hey guys, look! I’m Edward Scizzorhands, except with chopsticks!”

 

This painter let Cody try his hand- quite literally- at painting a picture

Cody completely focused in on his painting- a sort of concentration we don't often see from him.

The finished product!

 

He managed to reset the safe in Mom and Dad’s room with a combination he could not remember. We had to call housekeeping to open the safe. This required Dad to sign paperwork.

 

Every time we passed this particular statue, Cody would run up to it and smack it repeatedly on the bum.

 

He secretly set the alarm clock for an odd hour of the night and successfully woke everyone in the room up- two nights in a row. We now remember to check the alarm clock every night before going to bed.

 

Cody hopes to be a chef one day, and thoroughly enjoyed watching the chefs make noodles and prepare food when we were out to lunch one day.

More of that concentration we don't often see from him

Would any of you like to borrow Cody for your next international trip?

We’ve had plenty of happy and funny moments on this trip that haven’t had a place in any of our other posts, so here is a compilation. Enjoy!

We got especially loopy last night, as we’ve been in a hotel for a bit too long now and are ready for home. Levi got to witness the kids having a push ups contest, Mom reenacting The Lion King in a game of charades, Shane breaking out in tap dance and Cody in break dancing, Cody making plenty of farting noises with his armpits, and Amanda spontaneously singing Lady Gaga- only to have Levi burst out laughing at her.

This trip has been wonderful, and now it’s coming to a close. I am leaving for Los Angeles today at 5pm, and everyone else leaves for Pennsylvania tomorrow in the early hours of the morning. The blog will continue to be updated for a little while after the trip- I know we all have more to say. So keep looking out for more posts!

Safari Park!

December 5, 2011 marks Levi’s 14th birthday. For this birthday, God has given him the gift of family, and we have been given the gift of another brother and son. This has been a very happy day for all of us!

Happy Birthday, Levi! With lots of love, from your family.

Lotus Mountain

Today we took a trip to Lotus Mountain. It was an hour and a half drive from Guangzhou down towards the South China Sea. This attraction serves mostly as a place of worship for Buddhists, mostly due to the large female Buddha in the center, but all we took away from it was the beauty of the area and the refreshing air- it was so good to get away from the crowded city life! Sarah, Shane, and Cody had a great time running and running and running. Being cooped up in a hotel room for the past few days has not done them well, and this was an outing we ALL needed! We handed Levi Amanda’s camera for the day, and he enjoyed taking many, many pictures. While pictures do not do the area near the justice it is due, we hope that they provide a good representation, at the least.