Saturday, January 24, 2009

"Please do not forget me!

"Please... do not forget me!" is the cry of the orphan when a child gets a family and leaves the orphanage.


Yesterday we had Karina's going away party with her class.

We went to the store and told Karina she could pick out anything she wanted for the going away party.  I wish you could have seen her pushing the cart around the store with wide eyes and excitement as she picked out each item... bananas... imitation crab sticks (apparently a favorite)... bread... cheese.... some type of pepperoni (I think)... cake... candy... gum... cranberry spice drink... coke... sprite... 


We took a taxi instead of walking because of the gifts and party food... Karina gets us around town... telling the taxi drivers where to take us.  It is fun watching her negotiate with the taxi drivers and then the drivers look at me... trying to tell me that he needs more money and wondering why I was not talking to him... Karina continuing to negotiate the price and where we need to go... the man continuing to look past her and plead with me to help out... finally he realizes I do not have a clue what he is saying... he accepts her price and off we go.


At the orphanage we were greeted with hugs and kisses and Karina was surrounded by her classmates with dozens of questions.

The children prepared plates making sure everyone had exactly the same and then they patiently waited for us to say something...


We told the children how much we loved Karina... thanked them for being her friend for the past several years... told them that we loved them, cared for them, prayed for them and shared the good news of Jesus Christ with them - how we have a problem and that problem is sin - this sin keeps us separated from God and there is nothing we can do on our own to solve this problem but God loves his people so much that he sent his son, Jesus, who lived a life we could not - a perfect life - Jesus died on the cross and paid the penalty our sins deserve - he rose from the dead and is in heaven praying for his people - he has sent his spirit and his word (the Bible) to teach us - believing in him makes us right with God.


Then each child said something to Karina...

"We wish you happiness."

"We are glad you have a family."

"Do good in school."

"We hope you are happy."

"Please... do not forget us."


Karina's supervisor expressed how much she loved Karina... many tears were shed.

And then we ate together.


After eating, we passed out some gifts for each child; some of the kids tossed a football with me... and then the boys wanted to wrestle... one boy used me as a punching bag until he told me his hands were sore... it was almost like being with my boys... I wonder how often in their life these orphan boys have wrestled and punched a man for fun... we had a great time.

During the hours that we spent in Karina's old playroom, child after child came to Sheila and I and whispered to us... 

"Please, do not forget me!"


"Will you find a family for me?"

"Can you help me?"

The cry of the orphan when one of their friends has a family is, "Please do not forget me!"

They understand that it would be easy to leave and be forgotten...

all they want is a family...


They asked if they would see Karina again and we told them that we would return Saturday.

As we left a girl hugged and kissed Sheila... "Please... will you find me a family?"

We will try dear A.

A boy carried our bags outside for us, hugged us and said goodbye.  I gave him the football we had been throwing earlier.  With a huge smile on his face he said thank you.  And again I wondered what would become of this boy.


  1. I can never forget these precious children...and I haven't even met most of them yet.

    So glad you were able to have a party for Karina. I know she will be missed!

  2. Some have asked us if money spent on adoption would be better used in the hands of humanitarian organizations. From simply an economics focus, I guess that would be true, except children DO NOT WANT TO BE ORPHANS! God cares enough about each child to provide the funds a family needs to bring them into families, and HIS family!
    I love this post! Thank you!

  3. Beautiful post. Thank you for sharing your journey!

  4. Thanks so much for sharing these thoughts and pictures. We can't wait to leave and see our Dasha. Who could forget these kids? One by one, we can give them hope. Let us know when your home and we'll give you a call. Give Karina a big hug for us!

    David & Donna

  5. Matthew, Sheila, and Karina, I have many friends and family who are praying for you. They keep asking how you are. You have impacted more than just Karina. I know that you have touched many, many lives at the orphanage and beyond. God bless you for trusting Him throughout this whole wonderful time. We will be praying for the other children. I love you! In Christ, Dorothy

  6. You are on your way to Kiev tonight. Goodbye and God bless you, dear Nasekos family.