Friday, July 15, 2011

July 2011 update

Hello all,

I wanted to title this "Ukraine update" or "KCA update" but then I remembered I wasn't at either place!

"The America"-- By the Numbers
12 Maryland counties entered; 5 states + DC visited.
$2,403 raised (4 churches, plus a few small donations)
38 more people needed to sponsor me at $25/month!  Click here to contribute electronically.
4 of 13 churches visited

"Fundage" Update
My ministry in Ukraine cannot happen without your help and partnership.  YOU are part of the team.  As mentioned above, this summer $2,403 has been contributed toward my account.  A small part of that amount came from monthly sponsors.  To cover my expenses for this last school year, I still need $9,597 from either one-time donations or through monthly pledges.  If you are interested in contributing electronically, the link is above.  For contributing by check, here are the instructions:  Checks should be made out to: General Treasurer, Church of the Nazarene and mailed to PO Box 843116, Kansas City, MO 64184. Please include Jessica H /Mission Corps/Ukraine on the memo line of your check in order for the funds to go to the appropriate area of the world where I will be serving.  Thank you SO MUCH!

Re-Entry Shock
Re-entry shock, or reverse culture shock, hasn't been too bad.  One of the confusing things is dealing with time zones:  there is now a 7 hour difference between my friends in Ukraine and me, but no difference between me and my East Coast friends. Here is a funny story:  At Family Camp, I had a water bottle that I would refill in the dining hall and then take back to the cabin.  Eventually I realized that the tap water in the cabin was perfectly drinkable and that I didn't need to take my water bottle with me!

New Friends
In my travels, I have been able to meet lots of people.  Here are just a few --
*Lisa-Jo:  she and her husband lived in Kiev for 3 years, and attended the Nazarene church.  I read her blog, and we have many mutual friends.  We met for lunch the day I applied for my visa.
*Aleksey and Lena:  Ukrainian missionary couple with Campus Crusade ministering in Ocean City, MD to Eastern European students
*Missionary Rod Reed and his daughters Katie (18) and Hannah (12):  Missionary speaker(s) at Family Camp, from Africa Nazarene Univ.  I enjoyed having lunch with them one day, and hearing them share during the missions service.

NYC -- the capstone of my summer
Over 6,000 Nazarene teens and their sponsors gathered in Louisville, Kentucky last week for a time of worship, service, prayer, and fun.  Our Missionary Kid group had 29 students and 6 sponsors, coming from every region of the Church of the Nazarene.  My roommates included 2 MKs from Eastern Europe and one from Senegal.  I saw friends from all over the country -- Mid-Atlantic District, New England District, Maine, Michigan, and even El Paso!

Our crazy MK group
Our students (and sponsors too!) participated in the Bundles of Hope project, where we sorted and packed all kinds of baby supplies to be distributed to lower-income families in the Louisville area.  Another ongoing project was called "Something to Eat" (click link to learn more), where we helped package basic nutritious meals to be shipped around the world.

"Something to Eat" assembly line
We heard messages with the themes of Create, Broken, Promise, Presence, Satisfied, Mission, and Restored.  Later, in a time of group reflection, the students shared about how God was speaking to them.  Some shared about how they too can actively be involved in ministry where they are, that it's not just about their parents -- including their unsaved friends and getting involved more in their own youth groups.  Others shared stories of how God provided the funds and logistics for them come to NYC in the first place.  For these MKs, simply being with others who have common experiences of being a "third culture kid" and having friends scattered across the world was an encouragement.  They understand each other and can share their own experiences.

We also had times of fun, whether it was go-karting and mini golfing on Saturday, playing Ninja or Pterodactyl at the hotel, or enjoying the exhibit hall (usually gravitating to the drums in the NCM exhibit).

Eurasia representation at NYC
Upcoming Dates:
Click here to see my most up-to-date listing of churches I will be visiting.

Other Dates:
July 22-24: Road trip to New England!
Aug 15: Depart America for Ukraine
Aug 23: First Day of School / Parent Orientation

*The MKs' openness to God's leading and for their recognition of what God wanted to say to them during NYC.
*A full schedule of speaking at churches
*The opportunities to see friends and family while "home" in America

Prayer Requests:
*For the MKs to assimilate how God's spoken to them into how they live their lives for months and years to come
*MKs in transition -- whether it is between other countries or back to America
*Provision of the remaining funds for the rest of my school year.  I hope to be able to stay in Ukraine until the end of July, so that I can attend the district kids' camp.

One more year at KCA, here we go!  Thanks for all your support!

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