By Hunter Miller, Features Editor

Rachel McGarvey, senior, spent 10 weeks in Moldova with Operation Mobilization. 

What was a typical day like? 

Every day was so different. During my first three weeks I would wake up and help the church with painting or visiting the elderly. Then we would walk to a neighboring village and lead an after school program for the kids. We would play games, make crafts and teach a Bible story. After that, we would go back to the church to lead youth group, prayer meetings or spend time with our neighbors [by] drinking tea and building friendships. During my other outreaches, we would get up and travel to a village—by raft or foot—and walk around inviting kids to come to our program. 

What was the most difficult aspect of being overseas? 

It was really hard to be in a country where I did not know the language before I went. I had to work at learning the language every day so that I could build relationships with the people I was with. 

What was your favorite moment of the whole trip? 

I do not think I had one favorite moment. Something I learned about Moldova was to treasure the little things. I had to hold on to the little moments. The time when an old lady would give me a hug, a little kid would be so overjoyed we were playing with them or a man would cry because we brought him food—all of those little moments were my favorite. 

What was one of the instances that tested your faith the most? 

I had a difficult time working with the organization and there were many times…[when] a lot of responsibility landed on me. There were also times where I felt as if I had adjusted to the culture better than them (the missionaries) and they had been there for a few years. It was very difficult to see that and not be able to do anything about it. 

What did you learn through your internship that you think you couldn’t have learned by staying in the States? 

I normally work at a camp during the summers. I knew that camp was one of my favorite places, but being away from it in another country made me realize how much I loved working at camp. 

If you could pick a verse to sum up your experience, what would it be? 

“Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus” (1 Thess. 5:16-18)