Mission to the Low Countries
October - December 2013
"I thank my God every time I remember you."
Dear friends and family,
I hope you all have enjoyed this recent holiday season and that 2014 is starting out to be a wonderful year for you!
The end of 2013 was a blessed time for me! I was recently able to see many of you in October and November while I was on furlough. Here’s a summary of that time.
I arrived in the US on October 1st and was able to spend a few days in my hometown of Muscatine, Iowa. From there, my travels took me to Clear Lake, IA, York, NE, Bismarck, ND, Weyburn, SK (Canada), Minneapolis, MN, Fort Dodge, IA, Tomah, WI, Sheboygan, WI, Branson, MO, Nashville, TN, Ankeny, IA and then back to Muscatine for the last two weeks. I made presentations to seven different congregations, attended Homecoming for my alma mater, York College, as well as a lectureship and a ladies’ retreat, spent a weekend in Branson with my father, visited supporters, reconnected with old friends, and spent Thanksgiving with my family. I enjoyed the hospitality of many people (for which I can not thank you enough!) and put almost 6000 miles (about 9500 km) on my parent’s car. (Thank you, Mom and Dad, for letting me use the car!!)
When making presentations about my work, I was able to update people about my work with the Let’s Start Talking program, children’s Bible school days, youth rallies, Bible camp, the European Singles Retreat and other activities. I also gave a status report on my financial support. My needed budget is $2415 per month, and I currently have monthly support of $1260 per month. There, obviously, is quite a discrepancy. I’ve been able to manage to date with less donations per month because I’ve fallen behind on some financial commitments. Because I need to get caught up on those commitments, it’s necessary for more fundraising to occur. If you, your congregation or someone you know would be willing to take a look at my information and consider supporting this work, please let me know.
On December 4th, I arrived back in Belgium. After recuperating from the excitement/exhaustion of furlough, I was able to start getting back into work as well as enjoy the festivities of the holiday season. There were many opportunities to help with childcare for church members as well as Let’s Start Talking contacts. I rejoined the ladies’ Bible study in progress and met up with some of my Let’s Start Talking readers. I also enjoyed several holiday celebrations with friends. Now that the holidays are past, school is back in session and people are getting back to normal schedules, I look forward to reconnecting with more people and getting back to a more normal schedule myself.
Below are a few pictures from my furlough. I was able to reconnect with my friend, Jessica, who made the move to the Netherlands with me back in 2000. We hadn’t seen each other for eleven years!! It was great to see her and meet her young daughter. I was also able to spend time with supporters and have a taste of the RV adventure they have been on for the last couple of years. And a great blessing was being able to spend Thanksgiving with my family. In the front of the picture, you can see my 99 year old Gran!! She’ll be turning 100 in February!!
- Young adult fellowship day
- Youth rally here in Ghent
- Girls youth rally in Antwerp that I am organizing
- European ladies retreat
Specific prayer requests:
- Continued fundraising
- Let’s Start Talking contacts
- Ghent youth rally and Girls youth rally planning/organization
- For your generosity and hospitality during my furlough
- For your continued care and support
- For reconnecting with so many
As we begin a new year, I want to let you all know of the commitment I made to many while I was in the States. I will be writing a newsletter every two months and have it written by the 5th of the next month. (i.e. the January/February newsletter will be written by March 5th) I still have my blog, and I will try to put small updates on there when I can. The blog address is - email@example.com
I pray that we all can resolve to focus on what is truly important in this new year and bring glory and honor to our God!
In Him and through His strength,