News of Flooding in Romania........


     This is a note to bring you up to date on our activities during the recent flood here in Northern Romania.  For the last 3 weeks pretty much the whole country of Romania has been under flood watch.  Two weeks ago in the southern portions of Romania flooding was experienced.  These floods extended into the Northern Regions of Romania where Matthews House is located near the small city of Dorohoi, and in the middle of the villages of Dersca, Lozna and Padureni.  Last week on the 28th and 29th of June, a cloud burst occurred which dumped torrential rain (about 8 inches in one hour), followed by lesser but still heavy rain for the next 24 hours.  This resulted in a powerful flood that affected all the above villages to some extent with the city of Dorohoi and the village of Padureni the hardest hit.  A single fatality occurred in Padureni, with 20 others in and around Dorohoi.  Seventeen families homes were destroyed in Padureni with many more in Dorohoi. 

Day 1    

     Padureni is a very poor village and the area affected in Dorohoi is also very poor.  Tuesday morning my men and I quickly looked over the problems in the village of Padureni.  The men who work with me are all from that village so they were quick to fill me in on the needs of their neighbors.  First there was no electricity because the transformer there was under water.  To make our own electricity we had a portable generator that we set up at the only small store in the middle of the village.  Here the water only entered a little bit and we were able to help the store owner keep his freezers and coolers going saving his meats and vegetables from spoiling, (it would be a week before the electricity would be restored).  Then with our John Deere tractor fitted with hay wagon scraper blade and loader bucket our tractor driver dropped the hay wagon near the flooded houses where our men could begin to rescue folks belongings and pump out the standing water from the houses with our irrigation pumps.  Then the tractor proceeded to open the road that was blocked with mud and debris.  He also opened the drainage ditches that let the water that was trapped like a pond run free.  This work continued for two more days in intermittent rain.  All the time we prayed.  It then became evident that though most people in the village had made it safely to higher ground an elderly man of 80 had not.  He had died there in his flooded home. 

     Others needed water and food.  The wells in the village had become contaminated by the flood waters.  The immediate need was fresh drinking water and food.  While the men worked with the belongings of the flood victims and opening the road, I went with our four wheel drive vehicle to Dorohoi and bought 120 loaves of bread and 50 gallons of bottled water to meet the momentary needs of those who were without.  This would be the first of several such runs over the next two days.  At Matthews House proper we have a freezer stocked with 3 mature butchered hogs.  I ordered the freezer emptied and two more hogs to be slaughtered.  I traveled on to 3 other mission organizations to see what I could do to network with them to help the situation.  HCI, an organization that has a large kitchen at a school they operate told me that they would cook food that was brought to them for the flood victims.  I took them up on the offer. 

     Next I traveled to Center of Hope in Dorohoi where a soup kitchen is operated, but they had no electricity to cook.  I told them that meat was being emptied from our freezer to be sent along with with potatoes I found in Dersca to HCI to make soup and they were welcome to it.  I also had about 200 dollars worth of Romanian Lei in my pocket that I handed the director of center of hope to help with their needs in supplying food for the victims there in Dorohoi.

     After this, I received a phone call from a brother who said his pastor’s house was filled with water.  He asked if we could send a pump to evacuate the water from the house.  I sent the pump and a mechanic to supervise the pumps use at the pastor’s house.  Then I traveled on to the small village of Horleceni.

     There is a missionary family from the Isle of Man who builds houses for the poor.  These houses had also been flooded, but not as severely as other houses.  I was able to contact the missionaries by phone and invited them to come get meat and bread from Matthew’s House.  We also had an abundant supply of canned fruit and vegetables from last summer.  We turned all these over to them. They in return gave me about 20 gallons of fresh water for Matthews House to distribute. I then returned to a bakery and ordered 120 more loaves of bread for the next day.  This takes care of what happened the first day.

Day 2

     The second day our men worked setting up a soup kitchen in the culture hall of Paderuni.  We bought bowls and spoons and containers for soup.  I then began to transport large quantities of soup, bread and fresh water to the flood victims.  Also a group of folks from Alabama who were visiting HCI asked to take part in serving the soup.  I gave them a quick lesson in Romanian “Isus te iubeste.”  These were the first Romanian words I had learned upon arriving in Romanian over 20 years ago.  I have used them every day since then.  In English it says, “Jesus loves you." 

     After everyone had eaten their fill at the kitchen and had heard that Jesus loved them, we heard about 2 elderly sisters who were still stranded in their house in the flood area.  We loaded supplies in our 4-wheel drive vehicle.  We managed to arrive at the house but slid into a deep mud hole, becoming hopelessly stuck.  A nearby neighbor brought a tractor and log-chain and retrieved us from this situation.  I sent the folks from Alabama to see the 2 sisters and take the food into them.  They only had the words “Jesus loves you” and the food, while I worked on getting the vehicle unstuck.  I think Jesus is the greatest translation of all.  The entire world needs HIM.

     Upon returning to the village, I was met by the mayor.  He said they had a large backhoe, in fact a new one, with 4-wheel drive, but had no money for fuel.  I had about 15 gallons of fuel at Matthew’s House.  So I traveled back to the farm and got it and poured it into their back hoe.  As I left, I watched the large backhoe roar to life.  This ended the second day. 

Day 3

     By the third day the army and news media with their equipment arrived.  Up until that point, everything had been done in Jesus’ name.  All of our resources and us were exhausted.  But we provided quick response and needed help until the professional help arrived. 

     Please pray for Romania.  Many lives were lost, there was much damage to crops and property.  Rain continues to damage crops not eradicated by the flood.  Famine could be a reality by fall or winter because of the flood loss. 

Many thanks to all you who have contributed over the years, to help Matthew’s House be a city set upon a hill which cannot be hid.  Pray that on that hill
Jesus will always be seen. 


Love to all, Delbert and Martha and all the folks at Matthew’s House.


"Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me."
Matthew 25:40

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