Saturday, July 19, 2014

From the other side...

As Louise and I were walking down King Street in Toronto, Canada, we bumped into two locals in period dress. After exchanging pleasantries and receiving a short history lesson, we were asked where we were from and how long we would be staying in Toronto. Having heard that we were to return to the United States, the young man replied, "Oh, the other side..." So, here we are writing to you from this side of the other side...

We are, quite literally, homeless at present - which made for an interesting conversation at the point of entry into Canada. Having left the flat we were renting since the sale of our home, we now no longer have a fixed place of residence in the US. It has really brought home the sense of being sojourners on this earth...not owners, but passers-through.

We are presently at Mission Prep: iMPact...a missions preparatory course which covers all sorts of topics relevant to people going into the foreign mission field. For more details on this course, please check out our day to day reports on our blogsite:

Today was a particularly interesting day as we spent the morning in China Town as part of our cross cultural observation exercises. We were encouraged to find an object strange to us and to delay an attempt at interpretation and evaluation until we were well able to describe it in detail having asked all sorts of questions other than "why?". This will apply to anything observed in a foreign setting: describe, then interpret, then evaluate. Delaying interpretation until one truly understands what it is that one has observed helps to prevent coming to the wrong conclusions. Pretty neat, I think, and something we ought to apply even in non-foreign settings.

We will be leaving Toronto on Louise's birthday, July 24, and hopefully we will meet up with Larry and Tess Worley, dear friends of ours from Greenville, in Hamilton, ON. We plan to make it across the border before sunset though, as we need to send our passports and documents to the Ethiopian Embassy as soon as we are able. Please pray that we will be able to get this done on July 25 and sent away for our visas and the authentication of our relevant documents.

From there we will be driving on to Moline, IL to speak at Christ Church on Saturday evening and Sunday morning. Then we will drive to Mt. Rushmore, to Yellowstone, and on to Portland, OR to visit with our youngest son and his wife. We plan to attend St. Matthews and Iona Anglican churches in the morning and afternoon respectively.

From Portland we will be driving to Mobile, AL, hopefully stopping at various churches along the way (although we have no confirmed visits as yet). We will be stopping with our oldest son and his wife and our grandson in Mobile and attending Holy Spirit Anglican Church that Sunday.

We will celebrate our grandsons' third birthday prior to leaving for Ethiopia from Atlanta by the end of August.

1. We are now at about 65% of our monthly support.

2. The Jesus Film folks have agreed to grant us a set of film equipment for use in Gambela and beyond! We are so excited about this as the film will help with both evangelistic and discipleship efforts in the general area. They are also providing us with the film in most of the languages used in the Horn.

3. For a very blessed time at Mission Prep: iMPact. The friends we have made here will be friends for life, we are sure.

1. For the remainder of our monthly support need. Pray that the Lord of the Harvest will raise up the senders of the sent.

2. For the proper authentication of our documents and the issuing of our visas in a timely manner.

3. For a safe and uneventful trip around the US.

4. For the many goodbyes yet to come. I don't think we need to state the obvious. It will be difficult.

Thank you once again for your prayers and your support. We cannot do this without you!

Many blessings to one and all.

Johann and Louise

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