|our language teacher rode the bus with us yesterday to visit the orphanage. this was something she was looking forward to doing. on the way there, she and sally talked about the history of russia a little. its all stuff you are taught in high school, but it is never real at that age. at least, it wasnt for me. what high school kid looks at the word socialism and thinks about how that word governs millions of peoples lives? she told us about her grandmother, who owned two large estates only to have them seized by the government at the onset of communism. everyone was made equal, no matter what their status. i wont go into it in depth. the point is, we were able to hear about russia from a russian who was directly affected by the dark past of this country. the orphanage...what a load off it was to have a translator! she played the piano for the younger children and had them dancing and singing in no time. we were able to speak through her to a few of the teachers. the first thing they asked us is what we believed. so, we told 'em. they are russian orthodox, and believe that one must keep the ten commandments in order to enter heaven. we showed them the john 3:16 diagram and verse that Slava translated for us. it was hard to tell how receptive they were, but they took the copy. we were unable to keep them focused on the gospel because they had so many questions for us, and quickly changed the subject. but they have at least seen it, and the Holy Spirit will take over from there. sally and the teachers continued to talk about the orphans, the home, and everything else involved. this is a large part of what sally came to see and research - how it is done. these women were caring, compassionate and loving towards the children. they are the closest thing these kids will have to a mother, unless they are adopted. its their job to teach these kids how to live life. not only that, but try to give them the one-on-one affection they desperately want and need to function in society. i dont know how else to explain, but you mothers know what im talking about. all said and done, yesterday was monumental. your prayers are effective. dont stop. ever.