Well we made it to Rome and arrived at our hotel around 12:30 BUT is was not without many tears and hugs from the campers, staff & counselors. I can’t begin to say how hard it was this morning to say goodbye to all the people at the camp. We all formed some great friendships with people at the camp.
After breakfast in the morning (Joe & Stefania joined us for our last breakfast), Joe had all the Cedarville team come into the dining room for the children to sing one last song for us before we left. It was very special to hear the kids singing one last time yet very sad. Joe then asked us all to go out into the yard so that the children & staff could say their goodbyes. There were many hugs & tears! We all have our own stories of how specific people had an impact on our visit both young and old. One specific child is Giovanni. We met him the second day. He was in the family that Anna, Zach, Adam & I helped move. Giovanni was at both of the camps we helped with and we formed a friendship even with our limited ability to talk. When I was saying goodbye to him he just started crying & hiding his face, well, that got me started. I found a staff worker that could translate for me and I talked to him and told him how much of an encouragement he was to me even as a young kid, and maybe I would see him again and trusted he would grow into a young Godly man. Roxy has a picture of me talking to him with Sara translating to him.
We toured Rome this afternoon and saw San Giovanni, Scala Santa as well as seeing the Coloseum at night. We had pizza outside San Giovanni in a small piazza. It was great walking around Rome again. We took the Metro & a bus and managed to make our way back to the hotel without getting lost or losing anybody!