Antonio Moldovan shares a worn two-room house with his parents, grandparents, and three siblings in Romania’s Transylvania region. The 11-year-old’s family has so little that, at times, the adults sacrifice a meal so the children can have clothing or other essentials.
Antonio’s family is Roma, an ethnic group that faces discrimination in Romania. His parents and grandparents can’t read. They work in neighbors’ fields during the growing season to earn income for the whole year. Their only hope for the children is that they learn to read, so they will have more options in life.
World Vision and the local mayor are working in Antonio’s community to help families living in extreme poverty. The organization built a learning center near the clustered Roma homes so children can get extra help with homework after school. Between school and the center, Antonio has learned to read. He now reads to his parents and grandparents — and he especially likes to read the Bible.
This family has rising hope for the future. Please lift up Romanian children who still lack educational or economic opportunity, struggle with disabilities, or have lost the connection to their spiritual heritage.
Have I not wept for those in trouble? Has not my soul grieved for the poor?—Job 30:25
Pray for access to education.
While about 98% of Romania’s children attend primary school, children from many Roma communities do not. As a result, the work Roma families can do is limited, and the children suffer.
Heavenly Father, thank You for blessing Antonio with an education. Please help his peers in Roma communities to access schools with passionate, dedicated teachers.
Pray for economic opportunity.
Many Romanians living in rural areas have trouble finding reliable income. Entrepreneurial parents like Gheorghita and Florintina have found a sweet solution to their economic woes in their own backyard — keeping beehives and selling the honey. World Vision makes this possible for struggling families, providing training, hives, and equipment to help families launch their own beekeeping businesses.
Lord, thank You for the many ways You creatively provide for people. Reveal more ways for Romania’s rural families to earn a living from Your creation.
Pray that youth will have their spiritual needs met.
The mission of the Orthodox Church — Romania’s Christian heritage — was highly suppressed during communist rule. Today, World Vision is helping the re-emerging church reach young people like 13-year-old Elena Damaian in relevant, engaging ways. Elena is one of many teens connecting to the Orthodox Church through newly established youth groups. These youths are encountering Christ and growing together in faith.
Jesus, You are the hope of the world. Reinvigorate pastors and Orthodox Church leaders to inspire young people to be Your disciples. Empower all believers to preach the good news with boldness.
Pray for children with disabilities.
Ionela can’t afford treatment for her 5-year-old daughter, Valentina, who was diagnosed with cerebral palsy as an infant. Today this doting mother is able to take her daughter to a World Vision center in Bucharest. Here Valentina receives free therapy, and Ionela connects with other parents and learns to care for her daughter’s special needs at home.
Lord Jesus, in the spirit of Matthew 4:24, please heal Romania’s children suffering from debilitating ailments and disabilities. Provide adequate support and resources to enable struggling parents to care for these beloved children.
Pray for abandoned Romanian children.
At least 2 million Romanian adults have crossed into neighboring countries in search of higher-paying jobs — often leaving their children behind. Eight-year-old Toader and 11-year-old Parascheva were abandoned and now live with their ailing grandmother in a cramped two-room cottage. The children earn good grades in school, but the family has sold most of its pigs just to survive.
God, You are sovereign over these children’s pain and struggles. Help Romania’s leaders improve infrastructure so families can seize employment opportunities at home and be reunited.
Nathalie Moberg of World Vision’s staff in the U.S. contributed to this article.