Wednesday, August 2, 2017

People and Places

Today we left the vacation portion of our trip behind and met the rest if the team when they arrived in Athens.  Here we are in front if the Parliament building.

Our team is very diverse.  Our common bond is Christ and that we are here to help our brothers and sisters that are pouring out their lives for the refugees (more on that later).

Since everyone else had jet lag, we had an "easy" day.  Some climbed the Acropolis but others took a bus tour.  Since Terry and I will be in Athens next week, we opted for the overview of a bus tour.  Athens is a beautiful city with so much greenery on their streets.  I did not expect that.

After dinner we met in the lobby as a team and discussed the week to come. 

 Five of us are headed to the island of Lesvos to finish work on the community center that will be opening next week.  Just six miles from Turkey, this is where the refugees arrive by boat.  The rest of the team will be working directly with refugees  in community centers that are already set up in Athens or helping renovate a building for the Exarchia church plant.

The next morning we had some balcony time

And then set out in teams to attend either the evangelical church near the Acropolis or one of two church plants from that bigger church.  Terry and I went with Dale and Will to a church plant in Glyfada.  It seemed just like Redeemer church in Johnson City where we used to go EXCEPT THAT IT WAS ALL IN GREEK! They had run out of translation headphones so we were on our own to figure it out.  I kept hearing one word over and over and wrote it down to ask someone afterwards.  Turns out my one word was the subject, which was mercy.  I reflected that much of the time, God can get our attention with a single word.  

I took some video of the beautiful Greek singing.  The words were on the overhead but I could just make out Theos, Christos,  and alleluia.  A few seconds of this video will give you the gist. 

After the sermon there was a fellowship and I got a peek in the nursery.  The pastor's wife was apparently translating while helping in the nursery.  Impressive multi- tasking. 

Now we are off to Lesvos! 

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