VOM is in Bartlesville, OK, and it has volunteering opportunities for those who want to help. (You do have to apply and be approved first.) Steven and I took a trip to Oklahoma last week to stay at VOM and help in whatever way they needed us.
VOM has housing on campus for their volunteers. We're used to youth-camp housing, which is never terribly nice, so my expectations were low. We were blown away by what we were given: a 2-bedroom apartment with a nice living area and kitchen. (I believe they had some very generous donors give the funds specifically for volunteer housing.) We did get a good laugh, though, over our I Love Lucy sleeping arrangements.
We worked all day Friday, mostly in the Operations Center. We packaged a ton of newsletters and other materials for mailing out to supporters and those wanting more information.
|I called this the Melty Machine, as it melts plastic packaging shut. Steven was amused by my utter joy at using this machine, and he let me do it every time. Hey, it was sort of like crafting! Sort of...|
The staff offered us a tour of the main building, which naturally, we willingly jumped on. Admittedly, it's not much to see right now, but eventually, there will be a museum there. But we did get to see Richard Wurmbrand's desk. Wurmbrand founded VOM after being ransomed out of communist Romania, where he was imprisoned 14 years for his Christian faith.
Outside the entrance to the main building is a beautiful memorial wall listing Christian martyrs through the centuries.
|Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us. Hebrews 12:1|
We met so many nice people while we were at VOM. Not just the staff, but the other volunteers as well. One family with 7 kids had been living out of their RV for 6 months while volunteering at VOM. That is serious dedication to a cause! Overall, it was a very spiritually-edifying weekend and a great weekend of getting to help the persecuted church in some small, tangible way. We can't wait to do it again!