Emma's Moldova Trip

As part of a UCCF:The Christian Unions summer team Emma Hamilton travelled to Moldova to help run a Bible and English camp for 16-19 year old Moldovan students.

UCCF: The Christians Union are the Universities and Colleges Christian Unions and consist of students, staff and supporters who help run CU’s around different universities allowing all to hear and respond to the gospel. They run Summer teams, allowing those to travel abroad and evangelise outside the student world. Emma was part of the North West region team. In total there were 22 in the team (4 leaders) and were mainly from the universities of Liverpool, Manchester and Chester.

The training weekend was in June [3rd-5th] and it was where all the travelling mission teams came together for training in preparation for each individual trip. It was organised by UCCF: The Christian Unions. Although it was a weekend for everyone, the majority of the time was spent in individual region based teams. This provided an opportunity to learn more about the members in our team. There were also teams travelling to Paris, Russia etc. The weekend involved discussing ideas of how one would teach and prepare English lessons as well as going through the itinerary outlining the events to occur in Moldova.

The journey began leaving London Heathrow to Dusseldorf [which lasted around 2 hours] and from there onwards to Kiev (in the Ukraine) [2 hours also]. Once arriving in Kiev, a minibus journey (lasting 8-10 hours) brought us to our destination in Moldova (which was situated just outside Chisinäu, the capital).

In total there were around 50-60 Moldovan students who attended the Bible and English camp and throughout the week, many of them decided to accept God for who he was and follow him and thus became Christians, which was very encouraging to see.

At the end of the camp, we were given the opportunity to spend a night with a Moldovan student which was probably one of my favourite parts of the trip. I travelled with Tasha (a member of the English team) to the North of Moldova staying with two sisters. Their house was very nice including an indoor toilet! The family had a very practical approach to living, by growing all their vegetables themselves and rearing pigs and chickens, so we were treated to some Moldovan cuisine specialities. These included mamaliga – which is equivalent to polenta and is eaten alongside a variety of dishes including goats cheese, cucumber and pork.

We spent the last few days back at the church school debriefing and evaluating how we felt the whole trip went. It gave us time to reflect and think about what we had learned from completing the Bible and English camp. One of the things that I learnt was to appreciate things more (as it was very encouraging to see how happy and content the Moldovans were with what they had). I also was reminded that God is always there and accepts us for who we are – no matter where we are and what we are doing. Furthermore we are all designed with various talents and by sharing these talents and working as a team, you are able to achieve a lot with the help of each other.