Saturday, December 19, 2009

More Rothenburg Pictures


Our trip to Rothenburg, Germany for the Euro-American retreat was great. It's basically a retreat for the american missionaries, but there were also just missionaries from many countries who spoke english and were able to come. There were 15 countries represented and a little over a hundred people. There were many interesting speakers and the theme was John 17, the prayer Jesus prays before going to die. The ride was about 12 or 13 hours but we are getting used to it. The lessons were all in our hotel and we were just next to the walls of the little medieval city, so thats where we were when we had free time.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Nov 16th (2) haha

We just had a retreat at the church which was great. We watched "Facing the Giants" which we would consider a simple christian bookstore movie but for them it was deffinitely to see people talk about God in a movie. We had Alexander, Ichem and Ilyes at our appartment on Saturday Night which was great, too. The church spent some good time trying to "Face their Giants" as that was the theme. It was a lot like the retreat Craig spoke at at our church. This Saturday we will be leaving for Rothenburg, Germany for the Euro-American Retreat. So there will be an update after that! and some pictures of the ancient city walls... :-)

Teen Retreat Pics

Spain pics

There's Esteban and the people I was passing out fliers with.

Nov 16th

Finally going to write and let you guys know what's going on. I apologize. I've been busy and tired. Well anyways....Spain. We left pretty early on Saturday with the van full. Craig, a few teens from Marseille, us CEMistes and 2 Teens from Lille, Anna Andrejewski and Pierre-André Guillot. Albacété, Spain is where we were headed in southern Spain where they just started a new church with a preacher who went to a preaching school in Guatemala. There, we sang in plazas in the evenings and distributed papers for just reading the bible...people can come and say what they think, really kind of open, which I really take a liking to. Later in the evening, we had a conference in our hotel where we sang before there was a guest speaker or one night we had a film, which is when Greg passed out. There were other falls apart from mine which was rather dumb and embarassing. I decided to swing up on the shoulders of a few friends, but I was tired and one of them turned throwing my arm out when I had swung up a little higher than my height. Then I smacked my face on the pavement...all of this like 2 meters from a doctors office....well, kind of more like a hospital...I don't think these exist in the US..maybe a clinic...yeah, that's probably closest. I messed up my knee kind of badly but it's getting better, oh, and my face is fine :-) The last day we were there, we sang in a couple retirement homes. They were probably the most welcoming to the singing out of most people I've sang in front of. One of the guys who was at the conference gave us those opportunities. We also sang in a school that morning, promising to sing biblically. We also sang a few gospel tunes, teaching them a little about what that term means and sang father Abraham and they got to move around a little. They were very glad we were there. Little did they know we were in the same plaza as their school. We had instant response on the bible discussion nights the first day so we were pretty encouraged by that and that really kicked off our work there. The Ruiz Family are the ones who made this possible as the parents were some of the first to start the church and the 2 sons brought there family and were busy translating the whole time. I was overwhelmed as I tried to speak some Spanish as well...but i naturally translate that into my mother tongue. The trip was really overwhelming and encouraging at the same time. Esteban Ruiz really helped me out a lot when I was yelling at him in French to tell me what all these nurses were saying in the clinic. He has just lost his job and started working at the church in Geneva. He is a great guy and I know he will do great things at his church. After we came home, we had 12 hours to recover from Spain and it was off to the teen retreat at the center in the Ardèche Region. The Retreat went pretty well with more of a positive theme than past years as I'm told...but, we were really beat from Spain and I could feel the fatigue overtaking me. The retreat was really good for the teens at church as they could talk to us about their questions and try to make progress in a remote location. It's beautiful up there at this time of year, but on the other hand, starting to get cold. The two trips were great and fortunately we had some time off from classes when we got back to recuperate.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

October 17th

Hey Everyone!
I will be doing or trying to do weekly updates about what all I'm doing here. This past weekend was spent working on the apartment that was just rented out for the girls (Emily and Maylis). It was not very well taken care of and we are redoing just about everything, such as paint, electrical, plumbing and appliances. That will be done soon and is coming along fast with all the help. We also had our young adult evening on Friday night, which went well. We ate dinner and studied a bit. We also had a night for the teenagers which went just about the same way with some games thrown in. Both had decent turn-outs. We also had the 5-8 year olds after church on Sunday where we made some awesome coconut gourmet cookies with the help of Djédjiga, Khaled's wife, teaching them to "make cookies" and find ways to serve others. We had our normal courses every morning, worked at the apartment on Monday, on tuesday we had club cool (which is a sort of VBS during the week) and church and tuesday afternoon bible study. Wednesday, we started going to Saint Maurt, where we will be helping out with activities and serving at a retirement home. We will be helping an organization called the "pink aprons" or "smocks" in english. They host activities every week for many at the home there. We also had lunch with Denise on Wednesday afternoon which was great as always. She had her birthday this week on thursday and she soon will be returning to the states as I've mentioned, in November I believe.Thursday we went to Eliane's as usual where we studied for quite a while. Yesterday and today we had some down time and worked at the appartment again!? I hope it will be done soon so the girls can get settled. We will be going to Spainnext Saturday to a little town 2 hours from Madrid to help with an up-and-coming church. We will be staying for a week there and after that will be having a teenage retreat at The Center. Miss Everyone!

Monday, September 28, 2009

I haven't gotten around to writing thus far as.... well, there wasn't much going on with the program until now. We had our first 2 days of class Thursday and Friday (the 17th and 18th). The previous Sunday, we received some bad news. Elise Andreweski, a 12-year old girl from the Lille Church, whom I knew from camp, fell off a horse and went into a coma and didn't come out. 9 of us attended a funeral up in Lille, a 10-hour drive, but that wasn't a big deal and I was glad we could make it, we left friday after our classes and got home saturday late. It was really one of the sadest things I've seen, but I've never seen people follow through so well with something they wanted to try and keep positive as a believing family. I know that would be unimagineably challenging. After we got back, it was off to the Ardèche region on Sunday afternoon to Orientation. There we talked about our responsibilities, finances, schedule and the like. We also spent a fair amount of time trying to get to know each other because it was one of the only times where we would be only in our own company, which isn't a bad thing, but it can be if we don't kick things off well, so I'm glad that we did. Tuesday, when we finished our Orientation, it was time to set up for the Golden Age(Âge d'Or) retreat which was a group of around 12 of ages 60+. The retreat was amusing to us and we enjoyed their company. During the retreat, we helped out a little with tiling the new rooms that were built by the Pittman church (I'm pretty sure) and did the dishes and helped Denise Heroux out with the kitchen work. Who is "us"? The 3 other Cemistes this year are Constantin Tertov (my roomate), Emily Young, and Maylis Blasko. Something the Cemistes have to take care of is helping plan the Youth events at church. There are 3 younger groups, Foi en Fête(5-8), Foi en Folie(9-12) and AdoRation(13-17). Saturday night we had an AdoRation progressive meal where we visited different people's house for each course of the meal. Today we had Foi en Fête which was interesting considering I hadn't seen a game of "mother may I" since I last played it. Tomorrow is the first day of Chorale Harmonie which is cool for me because I like to sing and love music. We also are helping organise our own group where we will participate as peers which is the Young Adults Group(18-25). Today we also had soccer practice for the church team which was fun but once again enlightened me to the fact that I need to be playing soccer more often, it's exhausting. Throughout the summer I didn't do a whole lot. I spent some time with Denise Heroux (whom I have already learned a lot from)..she will be leaving to go back to New Hampshire soon. I spent 2 weeks with Jess (and my mom and Patrick in Paris for a few days) which was great. I also get sorted out in the appartment and had a lot of time to do some cleaning. Smaïl is the third guy in our appartment. He is the uncle of Kahled's kids and the brother of Didjiga. He is still in highschool in an "electrotech" program in what I understand to be a sort of tech highschool. He is 19 and plans to get baptized next Spring as JeanCarlo (Swiss), A guy he is close to from camp will be in town then to baptize him. He was raised muslim and is Algerian but from the Cabille region and speaks Cabille as well. Well that's alot of what's going on...feel free to ask me questions through this thing(website and program haha)...miss you all. 

Sunday, June 21, 2009

first post

Hey so this is my first post...just wanted to get this thing up and going before I leave...I will be posting photos...probably all edited because my gf, Jess has really gotten me into that and I hopefully will be putting up some videos as well. so hopefully I'll have some stuff up soon....leaving wednesday!