The day started with some very anxious goats as Ben, Wendy, Nicola, Edith and Lynn took on the challenge of milking them. Some of the goats ran for cover, others crossed their legs, but eventually they managed to get half a jug from them for breakfast! Three quarters of it was extracted by young Daniel, who lives at Charis and who has the responsibility of milking them each day.

Nicola milking the goat                                  Wendy milking

Nicola and Wendy milking the goats – notice how scared the goats look!

The rest of the day was spent at Charis working outside. It was good to have more time on site and get to know Charis better and the team here.

As the storm blew in Tonbridge, we basked in glorious sunshine and we were divided in to work teams – one sent to paint, others involved in making cement, moving rocks and preparing a basketball court. It was a very good day, though quite a few may be suffering in the morning with various aches and pains. It was interesting to be asked to sign a Health & Safety disclaimer just before we began!

Diet Coke break!                                                       The Cement Team

Michael – the diet coke moment!                           The Cement Team

The Team

Working hard – the team having a coffee break!

We worked until the sun went down – a glorious sunset.

Some spiritual things happen – Each day we are beginning with morning prayer and finishing the day with a time of reflection on “where did we see God today”. A very different day today from yesterday, but God was very evident in the way we worked together, the weather and the amount of work we got done. We are then watching some videos called “The Jesus Agenda” presented by Joel Edwards about Integral Mission based on Jesus’ manifesto in Luke 4.

We are having a great time together – good relationships and a lot of laughs, most of which seem to be at the Vicar’s expense!

The team of 12 are being looked after by Daniel & Mona who run Charis. Mona is in charge of the kitchen and is being helped by Doina & Lydia – lots of home grown and homemade food. Emma, Daniel & Mona’s daughter, is translating for us and has been very busy. Young Daniel, one of the original orphan boys who has stayed on, does a lot of odd jobs and DIY around the place. They have been very welcoming, great hospitality and we are getting on with them well.

This was going to be a joint effort but trying to get any sense out of the others who after a hard day seem demob happy, so this is Mark signing off for today!!